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Colombians Rally Against President's Economic Policies - 2004-10-13

Thousands of Colombians have taken to the streets as part of a general strike to protest President Alvaro Uribe's economic policies.

Colombia's labor unions organized Tuesday's work stoppage, which took place in Bogota, Barranquilla, Cali, Medellin and other cities.

The protesters demanded an end to negotiations aimed at reaching a free trade agreement with the United States. They also voiced their opposition to having taxes raised.

Additionally, the demonstrators were protesting potential changes to the constitution that would allow President Uribe to seek re-election. The president is currently barred from running for a second term.

Tuesday's mass demonstration came just days after a new opinion poll showed that the president's approval rating had fallen to 72 percent from 78 percent a few months earlier.