Colombia will allow the United States access to seven military bases
as part of a deal that allows the U.S. to conduct international
counternarcotics operations from Colombian soil, Armed Forces commander
Freddy Padilla announced Tuesday.
According to Padilla, the U.S. will have access to the Malambo airbase near the Caribbean coast and two airbases in central Colombia. Colombia also allows the U.S. to use naval bases in the country’s Caribbean and Pacific waters.
Padilla added that the U.S. are committed to assist neighboring countries when asked for.
Colombian and U.S. military officials organized a symposiom in Bogota to explain to military commanders from other Latin American countries what the U.S.-Colombian cooperation entails. Colombian President Alvaro Uribe will travel to seven countries, all part of South American defense organization Unasur to take away criticism the plan is receiving.
After Ecuador refused to extend a contract it had with the U.S. that allowed the Americans to use an army base in Ecuadorean waters, the U.S. turned to ally Colombia to be able to continue anti drugs operations in the region.