September 27, 2021

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The United States has expressed its commitment to “strengthen” relations with Colombia on security matters.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (EFE / Michael Reynolds)

The United States on Monday expressed its commitment to “strengthen” security ties with Colombia, one of its key allies in the region. The US Secretary of Defense spoke on his social media, Lloyd Austin, After his conversation with the Colombian Minister of Defense, Diego Molano.

“I spoke with Colombian Minister of National Defense ieDiego_Molano. I expressed my commitment to strengthening our lawyer relationship. We are talking about regional security, climate change, COVID-19 and respect for human rights in the Western Hemisphere. “Austin said.

The leaders discussed their shared interest in deepening cooperation on strategic issues, including COVID-19, climate change, the fight against terrorism and drugs, intelligence exchange and the guarantee of respect for human rights in Colombia and the hemisphere. The Secretary of Defense congratulated Colombia on its progress as NATO’s global partner, and acknowledged Colombia’s contribution to international and regional security.

This relationship between those in charge of the defense departments is taking place in the midst of the crisis that Colombia is going through, where social protests against the government continue.

In this regard, the United States highlighted the decision of the government of Ivan Duc T Use an action to locate missing persons in the structure of demonstrations and for their determination to investigate allegations of abuse against protesters.

Diego Molano, Colombian Minister of Defense (REUTERS / Luisa González)
Diego Molano, Colombian Minister of Defense (REUTERS / Luisa González)

“We welcome the announcements by the Colombian government to investigate allegations that the police used excessive force,” a spokesman for President Joe Biden said. Jen Saki.

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The White House press secretary said the Duke government had “activated a special search unit to investigate reports of missing persons with 35 teams across the country” and should follow up with complaints received by direct taxes 24 hours a day. “

“We urge the authorities to continue working to find all the missing persons as soon as possible. We certainly encourage those actions,” he said.

Zackie made the remarks at a press conference on the claims of US lawmakers, including a Democratic congressman. Jim McGovern, Biden government should condemn “clear and outrageous police brutality in Colombia”.

Protests erupted in Colombia on 28 April Let at least 43 people die, 15 in direct contact with the protesters, and 11 in the verification process, according to the Office of the Attorney General and the Office of the Ombudsman of Colombia, the constitutional body that guarantees human rights.

Both companies said 290 people were missing. The emergency search algorithm is active for 129 applications.

Washington’s request for Bogota Vice President and Colombian Foreign Minister Marta Lucia Ramirez, Creates an intense diplomatic agenda in the US capital this week.

Colombian government to investigate allegations of abuse against protesters (REUTERS / Santiago Mesa)
Colombian government to investigate allegations of abuse against protesters (REUTERS / Santiago Mesa)

According to the Colombian embassy, ​​this visit “It seeks to strengthen bilateral ties, learn about the social conditions experienced in the country and strengthen cooperation in the fight against Govt-19.”

After meeting with the Secretary-General of the United States Organization (OAS), Louis AlmacroFor now, Rameres has rejected his request to first look at what is happening in Colombia and the US-US Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).

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“We also have a request from the IACR and Secretary Almacro. We have said that all visits are welcome. But this time we have to wait for the regulatory bodies to finish doing their homework, investigate each case and arrange a schedule for any visit in the coming weeks. We consider, ”he told reporters.

The IACR, which asked the Duke government for a green light ten days ago to assess the ‘in-situ’ human rights situation in Colombia, said during a meeting with Ramas on Twitter “He reiterated the importance of work attendance, and its purpose and form were discussed.”

Rameres plans to meet with several congressmen, including Samantha Power and MegaGovern, executive director of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Colombian Vice President Marta Lucia Ramரres is in Washington (EFE / Mauricio Duñas Castañeda)
Colombian Vice President Marta Lucia Ramரres is in Washington (EFE / Mauricio Duñas Castañeda)

In a letter to the head of US diplomacy, Anthony Blink, McGovern, co – chair of the Commission on Human Rights in the U.S. Congress, and 55 other legislators called for an “immediate escalation of tensions in Colombia.”

The letter, dated May 14, called for a halt to direct aid to Colombia and the sale of weapons and equipment to Colombian riot police ESMAD. “Until clear and firm human rights definitions are established and met.”

Duke, who is close to the government of former Republican President Donald Trump, has said that Colombia, a traditional ally of the United States in the region, wants to maintain “strategic, bipartisan and bilateral” relations with Democrats Biden.

With information from AFP

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