Former President and Senator-elect Alvaro Uribe on Sunday claimed that German Vargas, the running mate of Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, had accused Santos of being implicated in a 2005 assassination attempt on Vargas.
In statements on YouTube and Twitter, the former president said that Vargas “isn’t credible” as Santos’ running mate, alleging that the senior politician “used to hate now-President Santos and accused him of crimes.”
Uribe said that following the attack Vargas visited him “in the presidential office and accused then Minister of Defense Juan Manuel Santos of being responsible” for the attack on his life. Uribe added that he subsequently told Vargas that he did not want to “continue with this infamy,” or false allegations against Santos, before several witnesses.
Vargas immediately dismissed Uribe’s claim by pointing out October 2005 car bombing attack took place many months before Santos was appointed Minister of Defense in July 2006. Vargas added that Carlos Ospina, a close ally to Uribe, was actually Minister of Defense when the attack took place.
“Telling lies on Easter is something very serious,” Vargas said Sunday.
Vargas’ has said he believes DAS, the now defunct Colombian intelligence agency, was involved in his assassination attempt, reported radio station La FM. Leaked DAS documents revealed that the intelligence agency was investigating that possibility too.
Following the assassination attempt, then-DAS Director Jorge Noguera reportedly attributed the attack to the FARC – Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – the oldest rebel group in Colombia.
The DAS was dismantled by Santos in 2011 following a wiretapping scandal during the Uribe administration. Noguera is currently in prison serving time over his ties to paramilitary death squads.
Uribe ardently backs Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, a candidate from his own Center Democratic party, for president in next month’s presidential elections.