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MEXICO CITY, Mexico – Latin America has taken one other leftward flip, this as Gustavo Petro was elected president of Colombia, Sunday, making historical past because the nation’s first leftist elected to be president. The shift left, analysts declare, could possibly be one more international coverage headache for the Biden administration.
Petro is a former guerilla chief. His victory will change politics domestically, and the steadiness of energy in Latin America because it provides to a wave of triumphs by the left within the area. Brazil could be the next triumph for the socialists if Lula da Silva wins in that nation’s election in October. This could strengthen a leftist bloc whose pro-Russia and China sentiment and decidedly antagonistic views in opposition to the USA, must be a priority for the Biden and future U.S. administrations.
Joseph Humire, govt director of the Heart for a Safe Free Society warns: “The victory of Gustavo Petro in Colombia consolidates the features of the Latin American left over the past decade. However whereas the Biden administration could sympathize with the leftist political agenda of a brand new President Petro, the U.S. ought to pay shut consideration to any potential authoritarian actions or efforts by the brand new Colombian authorities to dismantle, hijack or polarize democratic establishments within the nation underneath the guise of constitutional reform.”
The reward coming in from the continent’s socialist leaders was quick. Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro was fast to congratulate Petro and his working mate. “I congratulate Gustavo Petro and Francia Márquez for his or her historic victory within the Presidential elections in Colombia. The need of the Colombian individuals, who got here out to defend the trail of democracy and peace, was heard. New occasions are in sight for this sister nation.”
Maduro’s feedback had been echoed by Cuban president, Miguel Diaz-Canel: “I specific my most fraternal congratulations to Gustavo Petro for his election as President of Colombia in a historic well-liked victory. We reiterate willingness to advance within the growth of bilateral relations for the well-being of our peoples.”
Mexican president Andres Lopez Obrador, who simply two weeks in the past snubbed the U.S. by refusing to attend the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles, mentioned in an announcement: “Gustavo Petro’s triumph is historic. Colombia’s conservatives have all the time been tenacious and difficult. The author José María Vargas Vila recounted that the dictators of his nation ‘dipped their daggers in holy water earlier than killing…’ Right this moment’s triumph would be the finish of that curse and the daybreak for that brotherly and worthy individuals. Congratulations.” Lopez-Obrador will likely be visiting the White Home subsequent month.
Colombian analyst Jose Penso, a former president of the Colombian Affiliation of Political Consultants, urged warning and instructed Fox Information Digital: “It’s time to look forward to the tone of the Petro authorities in relation to the USA. He arrives with a dedication to unite the nation by consensus, making an attempt to seem much less radical as a result of he has been supported by teams on the middle. It’s nonetheless very unsure and solely with time will the tone of its relationship with the USA be seen.”
Throughout his victory speech, president-elect Petro mentioned: “Due to the power of previous generations who’re now not with us at this time we’re the sum of resistance, of a previous of wrestle and rise up in opposition to injustice and a world that discriminates.”
Observers mentioned that proof that democracy in Colombia continues to be stable was Petro’s opponent Rodolfo Hernandez’s instant response conceding defeat and congratulating the president-elect: “I known as Gustavo to congratulate him on his victory and provided my help to meet the guarantees of change for which Colombia voted at this time. Colombia will all the time rely on me.”
Based on the Related Press, Petro could have a troublesome time delivering on his guarantees as he doesn’t have a majority in Congress, which is essential to finishing up reforms. In current legislative elections, Petro’s political motion received 20 seats within the Senate, a plurality, however he would nonetheless should make concessions in negotiations with different events.
But regardless of the preliminary coming collectively of each candidates for president, one former president of Colombia Alvaro Uribe, whom Petro considers a political enemy, tweeted: “To defend democracy, it’s essential to abide by it. Gustavo Petro is the President. Let a sense information us: Colombia First.”
Critics and political opponents are afraid that Petro will nonetheless attempt to radicalize and transfer to an excessive left place.
Argentina primarily based analyst Agustin Antonetti of the Fundación Libertad, instructed Fox Information Digital: “The triumph of Gustavo Petro is the lacking piece, maybe probably the most worrying, of this new reconfiguration in Latin America, leaning in direction of a brand new wave of leftist governments.”
Antonetti continued, “A area that’s in alarming political and financial decline, in a fancy international context, with three horrible dictatorships (Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua) that appear extra alive than ever and surrounded by numerous populist leaders, now in energy, who they endorse them and are prepared for something. The massive query is: Will the establishments in Latin America resist this new wave of governments in a transparent rise of authoritarianism?”
Isaias Medina, a former excessive rating Venezuelan diplomat on the United Nations who was one of many first Venezuela diplomats to resign in protest over the Maduro regime, mentioned the U.S. wants to concentrate saying that Maduro and his acolytes had been, “tightening the noose round democracy’s neck in Latin America.”
Medina instructed Fox Information Digital, “The American beacon of sunshine and freedom should shine brighter.” He mentioned, “President Biden has but to face his hardest challenges of a full-scale China, Iran and Russia to overhaul the final areas left up in Latin America by absent U.S. insurance policies and actions.”
The previous Venezuelan diplomat mentioned that “a pale financial future looms within the final strikes of the geopolitical chess (recreation.) Within the phrases of Ronald Reagan, ‘freedom and liberty are one technology away from extinction.’ Allow us to pray that this isn’t the technology that enables it to occur.”
Gustavo Petro acquired 50.47% of the votes defeating his rival Rodolfo Hernández who obtained 47.27%. The leftist candidate, who for a very long time mentioned that there was no democracy in his nation, wins an election that confirmed democracy does certainly exist and works, observers say the Biden administration should preserve a really cautious watch as Petro begins his time period as president on August seventh.
The Related Press contributed to this report.