Colombian right wing's agenda leads to growing tensions with Cuba
Bogota, Jan 18 (Prensa Latina) Tensions between Colombia and Cuba have grown due to the former's political right wing's agenda in view of the 2020 elections, former peace negotiator Sergio Jaramillo said on Monday.
In an interview with W Radio, Jaramillo noted that the review of relations between the two countries by the Duque Government at the request of his party, the Democratic Center (CD), responds to the capital search for the elections next year.
Last week, the CD asked President Duque to rethink the diplomatic relations with Cuba after its inclusion in the US list of state sponsors of terrorism.
Jaramillo, who is the Colombian ambassador to Belgium, noted that the aforementioned action is a danger, because it gives in to Washington's policy towards Havana, and in the end, it will also harm Bogota's international relations.
He added that in order to achieve so, 'Castro-Chavism' is being used as a strategy related to fear of the left in power and of foreign interference by Cuba and Venezuela that at other times worked for the CD.
Jaramillo recalled that 'Castro-Chavism' phobia was the main element to manage Colombia's public opinion in view of the 2018 plebiscite, when the peace agreement reached between the government of Juan Manuel Santos and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) was rejected by the majority.
'Sadly, this government is not going to have anything of its own to show; thus, we have to take the scarecrow out of Castro-Chavism again and put up a fight,' the diplomat said.
Jaramillo added that Cuba's inclusion in the list of countries that sponsor terrorism and Colombia's position in that regard is a double-edged sword, considering the negative repercussions for both Cuba and his country.
On that issue, he deemed as counterproductive that the Duque government is demanding from Havana the extradition of the National Liberation Army's (ELN) negotiators, a request denied in compliance with the protocols signed for the peace negotiations between Bogota and that insurgent force.
'It is not a minor action to include Cuba in that list (of state sponsors of terrorism). It is also serious for the international reputation of Colombia, which was at its highest point four years ago and with this (the extradition request), an enormous capital has been lost,' the former peace negotiator concluded.
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