Santos to miss Ibero-American Summit to monitor elections

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos will miss the annual Ibero-American Summit to monitor the upcoming local elections, Colombian media reported.

Santos said he will stay in Colombia during the election weekend to join the defense and interior ministers in monitoring municipalities across the country to protect them from threats or attacks from guerrilla groups and drug gangs.

The Electoral Observation Mission (MOE) in Colombia recently warned that 158 political candidates have been the victims of political violence, 41 of whom have been murdered, and that the elections in more than 30% of Colombia’s municipalities are at risk.

The Ibero-American Summit convenes the heads of state of Spanish and Portuguese speaking nations around the world to address the common interests between the states. The summit will hold its 21st annual meeting in Asuncion, Paraguay on Friday and Saturday, October 28-29. Colombia’s local elections will be held on Sunday, October 30.

Santos previously left the 2010 summit early to return to Colombia to address the rainy season crisis.

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