WASHINGTON.- El gobierno estadounidense de Joe Biden acusó este viernes al expresidente paraguayo Horacio Cartes de “corruption” and vetoed him from entering the country. Cartes, a rich tobacconist, governed Paraguay between 2013 and 2018 by the conservative Colorado Party.
Washington designed it “for its implication in significant corruption” al haber “obstruido una importante investigation internacional sobre el crimen transnacional para protegerse a sí mismo and su partner criminal de un posible juiciamiento y daños politicos”, assures the head of the American diplomacy, Antony Blinken, in a communiqué without identifying the partner.
These actions “undermined the stability of the democratic institutions of Paraguay by contributing to the public perception of corruption and impunity in the office of the Paraguayan president,” he added.
Además, according to Washington, sus acciones “permitieron y perpetuaron la participação recently documented de Cartes con organização terroristas extranjeras y otras entitas designatedas por Estados Unidos”. This affects the security of the United States against transnational crime and terrorism and “threatens regional stability,” adds the report.
With the designation of Cartes in the list of corrupt persons and organizations, the Biden government seeks to demonstrate that the fight against corruption in Latin America is one of its priorities. In this list, other personalities from diverse countries, from drug traffickers to public officials, also appear. Washington considera que la corrupción es una de las principales causantes de la migration because it damages the economy and deepens poverty and inequality.
Cartes, who served as president of Paraguay between August 2013 and August 2018, es propietario de un conglomerado de unas 25 empresas, including one of three conglomerates de media de comunicación de Paraguay, empresas tabacaleras y una cadena de supermercados.
The employer reacted immediately. “I refuse and reject the content of the accusations, which I consider unfounded and unjust”, Cartes expressed in a three-page communique that he published on his Twitter account. “We are always and we will be committed to offering all the support and information from the first source that the authorities need to clarify the issues that we are questioning,” he said.
The ex-president has been questioned for alleged irregularities in his multimillionaire heritage and has been investigated in Brazil for alleged links to the leader of a money laundering network. He is currently active in the politics of his country and aspires to become the next president of the official and conservative Colorado Party in which he is fighting. The internal elections are in December.
According to the American government, the actions of Cartes “allowed and perpetuated” their most recent participation in terrorist organizations and other entities that have already been designated as corrupt by Washington.
Además de Cartes, fueron includios en la lista de corruptos sus hijos Juan Pablo Cartes Montaña, Sofía Cartes Montaña and María Sol Cartes Montaña.
In a press conference at the United States Embassy in Asuncion, Ambassador Marc Ostfield announced that there are other similar designations on the way, pero declinó ofrecer detalles sobre las researches a Cartes.
“No podemos revelar ningun specific detail sobre investigations en curso o futuros porque no queremos interferir en estas investigations,” Ostfield said. “I can say that the United States will continue to use all the tools we have to combat corruption in Paraguay.”
The diplomat explained that there is credible information and sufficient evidence to designate Cartes as a significantly corrupt person.
Agencias AP y AFP