Colombian presidential candidate Gustavo Petro, of the leftist Historical Pact, denounced this Monday that the La Cordillera criminal gang is allegedly planning an attempt on his life, for which he suspended his political raid through the departments of the tourist region of the Eje Cafetero (center).
This was expressed in a statement by the Petro campaign, in which it assured that “the visits to the departments of the Coffee Region scheduled for next May 3 and 4 were suspended for security reasons.”
The information added that “according to the work carried out by the (Petro) security team, which received first-hand information from sources in the area, the La Cordillera criminal group is planning to attempt against the life of the presidential candidate.”RELATED
The Cordillera is, according to the document, a paramilitary organization dedicated to drug trafficking and contract killings that operates mainly in the departments of Quindío, Caldas and Risaralda and “has achieved broad control over the regional and political civil authorities of the Coffee Region.”
The complaint indicates that some members of the Police and Army in the area are supposedly part of that criminal group.
The document concludes by saying that the information on the attack “was verified by the analysis and investigation team of the ‘Petro Presidente’ Campaign”, which “had access to highly credible sources and to some members of the police institution, who stated that a member of the Sijín (Criminal Investigation Section), who would have participated in the murders of the youth leader Lucas Villa, would also be part of the criminal plan”.
Villa died in May 2021 after being shot by unknown assailants in a sector of Pereira during a day of demonstrations against the Colombian government. The young man became a benchmark for peaceful protests against the Government of Iván Duque for his educational talks and his cheerful character.
Police say they have no information on possible attack
For its part, the Police said in a statement that “so far they do not have any intelligence information or information linked to judicial processes that allows inferring the existence of a criminal plan against the candidate of the Historical Pact movement.”
The document pointed out that in the event that he had had any “immediate” information, it would be made known to the competent authorities through the corresponding channels. Likewise, the Directorate of Protection and Special Services contacted the head of the Petro scheme to carry out “the necessary coordination in case an adjustment to the measures of which the candidate is a beneficiary is required.”
The Police recalled that Petro has “one of the most robust security schemes in the country” and that, in addition, every time the presidential campaign holds events throughout the national territory, “all the necessary support is available to guarantee his life, integrity and political activity”.
Petro leads the polls
According to recent polls, Petro and Federico “Fico” Gutiérrez, of the right-wing Team for Colombia, are emerging as favorites to contest the Presidency in a second round. The survey by the firm Invamer published last week indicates that Petro has 43.6% of the voting intentions for the first round, which will be held on May 29, and is 16.9 percentage points ahead of Gutiérrez, who reaches 26.7%, with which both would dispute the Presidency in the second round on June 19.
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