Defense Minister Rodigo Rivera had come under fire earlier this month from within the coalition for allegedly not being able to curb ongoing violence by neo-paramilitary gangs in the north of the country.
But according to Santos, the government’s security policy is showing positive results. The president cited police figures that showed a 6% decrease in homicides in the course of the year compared to the same period last year.
“Regarding kidnappings, we see the same number, 26, but there’s a difference in type. Extortion kidnapping decreased from 18% to 14% and common kidnapping rose,” said Santos in a public meeting in the eastern city of Cucuta.
NGO Pais Libre recently revealed that according to their monitoring system, kidnapping in 2010 went up with 32% compared to the year before.