Colombia’s ambassador to the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Alfonso Hoyos, complained Wednesday to the regional body’s permanent council of “unacceptable” attempts by foreign nations to intervene in the Colombian electoral process.
“It is unacceptable that foreign governments try to intervene in our presidential campaign,” Hoyos told the council, without naming any particular nation.
The ambassador asked the council to publicly establish its position on the matter.
Hoyos’ address to the council follows a comment made Wednesday by OAS secretary general Jose Miguel Insulza that statements by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s regarding Colombian presidential candidates are “bad practice” but do not constitute “intervention” in the Colombian electoral process.
Insulza’s comment drew mixed reactions from presidential candidates.
Chavez has been highly critical of Partido de la U’s presidential candidate Juan Manuel Santos, calling him a “wolf dressed up as Little Red Riding Hood,” because of the way he is “going around searching for votes.”
The socialist president, who has denied trying to influence the Colombian elections in any way, said that “if the people of Colombia … disgracefully vote for Mr Santos … I will not receive him.”
Santos said last week that he would welcome talks with Venezuela, after Chavez said that he was ready to “turn the page” with Colombia.
Chavez responded, saying that Colombians can forget any kind of relations with Venezuela if they elect Santos, “who is a real mafioso.”
Colombia’s presidential elections are scheduled for May 30.