The Colombian State Council says the country’s government can not allow
U.S. troops to operate from Colombian soil and needs to consult with
the council first. The U.S. and Colombia are close to closing a deal
that allows the U.S. to perform anti-drugs operations from Colombian air
According to State Council President Ostau de Lafont, the constitution obliges the government to have the green light from the high court before allowing foreign troops to enter the country.
Defense Minister Freddy Padilla said earlier Thursday the agreement “complies with the Colombian constitution” because it is an extension of U.S. support for Colombia’s fight against illegal armed groups and drug trafficking.
According to President Alvaro Uribe, “to obtain agreements with countries like the United States to — with all respect for the Colombian constitution and the autonomy of Colombia — help us in this battle against terrorism and drug trafficking,is of utmost convenience for the country.”
The U.S. wants to use Colombian airbases and deploy hundreds of troops in the country to coordinate efforts to combt drug trafficking in the Pacific and Caribbean.Colombia’s north American ally already has troops in Colombia to help the country’s domestic coca growth and production of cocaine.