December 1, 2021

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Declaration of war ?: Controversy unleashed by Colombian defense minister after calling Iran (from Israel) a “common enemy”

It took Colombian President Ivan Duque more than a day to clarify the merits that Diego Molano used against the Islamic Republic.

Colombian Defense Minister Diego Molano has unleashed a new controversy after describing Iran as a “common enemy” in a controversial statement from Israel, which has embroiled the Ivan Duc government in international relations.

During Duke’s official visit to Jerusalem, Molano’s statements included the president agreeing with his Israeli envoy, Isaac Herzog. Extending contracts in military matters, Cyber ​​security, border and space security, as well as strategic intelligence exchange “in the fight against international terrorism,” with special emphasis on the “border with Venezuela”.

In a joint statement between Duke and Herzog, both acknowledged the duty “War” against “terrorism” Forms cells according to them Hezbollah, As well as cooperating in international work to halt the Iranian nuclear development program.

As Herzog puts it, I hope Colombia can “Help fight diplomatically” Against Tehran from his position as chairman of the Council of the International Atomic Energy Agency, he confirmed that Tel Aviv was aware that Bogot was concerned about “cells of Hezbollah terrorists on the border with Venezuela.”

Molano’s controversial statements came as new agreements were signed between Duke and Herzog. “We have a common enemy here, which is the case of Iran and Hezbollah acting against Israel. But it supports the Venezuelan regime, so this is an important initiative and exchange of information and intelligence, which we are building with the military forces and the Ministry of Defense in Israel, “said the Colombian minister.

Reactions

Gustavo Pedro, Colombia’s senator and candidate for president, was one of the first to respond to Molano’s statement, noting that his words exposed the Colombians to a potential war situation.

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“Can Minister Diego Molano consider Colombia an enemy of a country that has diplomatic relations? Can a minister be in a wartime situation with a country that has never hurt us?Pedro wrote on Twitter.

Similarly, Senator Luis Fernando Velasco said declaring Iran an adversary was “unforgivable” and reminded Molano that he had no authority to set up such posts as defense minister, which should only be mandated by the president and president.

Your declaration of Iran as Colombia’s enemy is unforgivableI remind you that we have diplomatic relations with that country and that you have no authority to classify another country as our enemy. Correct your mistake, “Velasco wrote.

Congressman Jose Daniel Lopez also rejected Molano’s “irresponsibility” and asked him to correct why he should not buy into “unnecessary fights” with the Middle East. “The irresponsibility of Minister Diego Molano on the Iranian issue is not ordinary. Buying unnecessary fights in a troubled region like the Middle East does not apply to any sensible mind. Minister: Please correct. ”

For his part, presidential candidate Roy Perez Warned For the first time in Colombia’s history, a defense minister declared Iran “irresponsible” and “an enemy state” on its own account. “What’s next? Declaring war on him? There are many countries with undesirable regimes and interests, but they are not declared ‘enemies’, “he questioned.

Furthermore, the Communist Party urged the Minister to “urgently (…) carry out the basic diplomatic curriculum for the government” so as not to endanger the country. “International relations help establish conversations Shouldn’t we create ways of communicating with other states and declare hostility or does Iran not have an embassy in our country?

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Duke Interpretation

President It took Duck more than a day to clarify the qualifying “enemy” Colombian vice president and foreign minister Marta Lucia Ramirez, who is touring Japan, was caught up in Molano’s controversial statements, as he did.

First, Duque did not dismiss the statement outright, saying that Molano’s words were intended to question Iran’s political support for Hezbollah.

“Colombia maintains diplomatic relations with Iran, but Colombia is very clear on what terrorist threats are, which is why we have the ability to ask many countries in the same diplomatic dialogue what kind of relationship they may have with those factions.” Two hours after Molano’s intervention, Duke said, According to Local media.

This Tuesday, however, the president clarified – albeit with his warnings Colombia “does not use the word enemies to refer to any country”, Because “this is a nation that respects international law.”

“Colombia has diplomatic relations with Iran, but it has That doesn’t mean we don’t have differences In particular, Duke said, “these conflicts do not include the development of nuclear weapons, the enrichment of uranium, or the proliferation of nuclear weapons.”

There was no reaction from the Iranian side to the Colombian defense minister’s question. Last week he starred in another controversy Earlier this year, the Colombian executive allegedly received a cyber-attack during a massive protest against the Duke government.

According to the Press Freedom Foundation, Molano’s office denied the allegations and said the report was a hoax. Cyber ​​attack When police and military forces were condemned for engaging in protests against human rights abuses and violations, the government aimed to improve its image and justify its cyber patrol policy.

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