Thursday, September 18, 2014

Colombia: Former President Alvaro Uribe Disrupts Senate Re: Allegations by Senator Cepeda

According to The Latin American TribuneColombian ex-president and current senator, Alvaro Uribe, has been openly accused of having collaborated with the late drug kingpin Pablo Escobar and of having aided paramilitary violence in Colombia.

The accusations were made Wednesday (September 17) by Senator Ivan Cepeda, of the leftist Alternative Democratic Pole (PDA) party, during a debate in the senate.

Cepeda claimed that Uribe granted landing permits to the planes of Escobar’s so-called Medellín Cartel during his term as civil aviation director in the early 1980’s.

Among the aircraft were those belonging to Escobar’s pilot, Alvaro Suárez Granados and to Luís Carlos Molina, the drug baron’s lawyer and “banker.”

Cepeda also accused Uribe of being a senior figure in a company run by Molina which carried out the murder of Guillermo Caño, the director of the newspaper El Espectador, in 1986.

“We found a business relationship between Alvaro Uribe and the Medellín Cartel, nothing more and nothing less,” Cepeda said.

The senator also said that Jaime Uribe, brother of the former president, had a relationship with Dolly Cifuentes, of the Cifuentes Villa clan, that “currently could be the cocaine supplier and money launderer for the cartel of Sinaloa” in México, he said.

Cepeda added that Uribe had aided the criminal activity of a paramilitary organization in Antioquía province, the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, when he was governor there in the mid-1990.

To support his allegations, Senator Cepeda presented documents, recordings and videos with what he claimed was proof of his charges, including testimony of former paramilitary chiefs compiled through years of investigation.

COMMENT: Senator Cepeda said he would turn over the material to Colombian justice officials.

After the charges were made, Uribe left the senate chamber and rushed off to the Supreme Court of Justice to to present his own evidence against Cepeda, who he called an “ally of the terrorist group Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).”

Upon returning to the Senate, Uribe denied the charges, defended his honor and attacked Cepeda and others who had accused him of misdeeds.

Following the debate, politicians described Uribe’s outburst as an embarrassing and shameful spectacle unfitting of a former Colombian president.

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