Argentina and Colombia to ‘strengthen relationship’ after Milei comments spark diplomatic row

Ambassador Romero will return to Buenos Aires and a new Argentine ambassador will be appointed in Bogotá

Argentina and Colombia announced they’re taking steps to ease diplomatic tensions between the two countries in a joint communiqué released late Sunday evening. Colombia expelled Argentine diplomats from Bogotá last week after President Javier Milei referred to his Colombian counterpart Gustavo Petro as a “terrorist assassin” in an interview with CNN.

“The respective governments have taken concrete steps to overcome any differences and strengthen this relationship,” read the communiqué, which announced the Colombian government had greenlit the return of ambassador Camilo Romero to Buenos Aires and the appointment of a new Argentine ambassador in Bogotá.

Foreign Minister Diana Mondino, who attempted to tone down last week’s bilateral tensions, will also visit Colombia, although the communiqué does not specify when. The Foreign Ministry told the Herald no official date has been set.

“Argentine and Colombian communities reside in both countries: students, workers, businessmen, and their families have built a [bilateral] relationship and are its foundation. Both governments will continue to work together for their wellbeing,” said the statement on the eve of the 201st anniversary of diplomatic ties.

Milei’s remarks were among excerpts of a CNN Español interview published last week in the run-up to full release on Sunday. It’s not the first time Milei has taken aim at his Colombian counterpart: he called Petro “a murderous communist who is ruining Colombia” in January. That interview prompted the recalling of the Colombian ambassador from Buenos Aires.

His comments reference Petro joining the M-19 guerrilla movement in 1978, which decided to halt operations and hand in its weapons in 1990. Petro had already moved on from his involvement with the group to become a councilman. He was later elected senator and mayor of Bogotá and became president of Colombia in August 2022.


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