Colombia’s Interior and Justice Minister German Vargas Lleras said that the government will increase security measures for members of opposition party Polo Democratico amid death threats from neo-paramilitaries, El Espectador reported Wednesday.
The president of the Polo Democratico, Clara Lopez Obregon has reported receiving death threats from neo-paramilitary group “Aguilas Negras,” as well as being traced by Colombia’s disgraced intelligence agency DAS.
Vargas reacted openly to the reports, stating that “I am completely willing to listen to all complaints that may present themselves, about the new elements that are affecting the security of members of the Polo [Democratico],” he said.
He noted that the government is already providing security protection to the opposition party members but said that the government is willing to respond to the calls for increased safety.
“If there is room to consider increasing or examining the circumstances that may be affecting their physical integrity, it is our obligation to review the issue,” said Vargas.
A proposed meeting between Vargas and Lleras was cancelled last week after President Juan Manuel Santos decided to send the Polo Democratico shortlist of mayoral candidates — to replace suspended Bogota Mayor Samuel Moreno — to the Council of State for review.
Minister Vargas stated that Santos will appoint the new mayor very shortly, potentially by Wednesday.