Declassified US cables link Uribe to Colombia drug cartels

May 26, 2018 - 12:35 am

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Newly declassified State Department cables show that when Alvaro Uribe was making his rise to Colombia's presidency in the 1990s, U.S. officials were frequently told he had ties to the nation's then-powerful drug cartels.

The cables were obtained by the National Security Archive and released Friday.

Allegations of links to drug cartels and paramilitaries have dogged Uribe for years. But he's always denied them and while president from 2002-2010 was a staunch U.S. ally in the war on drugs.

In the cables, U.S. officials discuss information they received from other politicians that Uribe's political campaigns were financed by a family belonging to the Medellin cocaine cartel.

The release of the cables comes as Uribe's handpicked candidate, Ivan Duque, is the frontrunner in polls ahead of a presidential election on Sunday.

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