Majority of Colombians oppose decision to establish relations with separatist group

The majority of the Colombian people oppose the decision to establish relations with the Polisario, “a separatist group that is recognized neither by the UN nor by any European or Arab country, with the exception of the Algeria,” said Colombian Senator German Blanco, who pleads for the review of this decision.

German Blanco underlined that the signing this week by a majority of Colombian senators (62 out of 108) of a motion rejecting President Gustavo Petro’s decision to establish relations with the pseudo “rasd”, constitutes a strong signal on the rejection of this initiative by the majority of the Colombian people.

In the Senate, “we believe that Colombia should not interfere in the internal affairs of another sovereign state and that Morocco deserves all our respect”, insisted the senator in an interview with MAP.

“We have had bilateral relations with Morocco for 50 years, relations reflected in conventions and trade agreements that make the Kingdom a strategic partner for Colombia,” added Senator German Blanco.

For these reasons, “Colombia, contrary to what President Petro and his Minister of Foreign Affairs are doing, cannot establish relations with a separatist group”.

The Colombian senator wishes to point out that the motion to reject this decision was signed by a majority of senators from the center-right and from the left, including those who are political allies of Gustavo Petro, so that the government in place “corrects its position with regard to the separatist group of the polisario”.

He added that the motion emphasizes that Colombia aspires to “strengthen relations with Morocco (…) which we consider a strategic partner in the current international context and a gateway to Africa”.

German Blanco also deplored that the decision of the Colombian government, which does not reflect the position of all Colombians, nor that of Congress, risks “deteriorating a very solid relationship with Morocco”.

Last Tuesday, a motion endorsed by an overwhelming majority of the Colombian Senate expressed its “categorical rejection” and “total disagreement” with Gustavo Petro’s decision which “goes against the fundamental principles of Colombian diplomacy”.

The motion read in the plenary session of the upper house, the most powerful in Parliament, clearly states that “the decision taken by the Colombian Ministry of Foreign Relations last August (…) has ruined the excellent relations that we have always maintained and wish to continue to maintain with Morocco”.

This motion, initiated by German Blanco, member of the Conservative Party (in power) and former President of the House of Representatives, was signed by representatives of nine parties in the Senate, all ideological tendencies combined.

Subsequently, several senators spoke in plenary session to protest against Petro’s decision and to express “their concern about this recognition of an armed group” by their country, which has itself been fighting armed groups for several decades on its own territory.

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