07:39 GMT +313 November 2019
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    Colombia's Defense Minister Guillermo Botero

    Colombian Defence Minister Resigns Amid Scandal Over Killing Cover-Up - Officials

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    MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) – Colombian Defence Minister Guillermo Botero has resigned in the wake of a scandal over his failure to disclose deaths that resulted from a security operation against members of a former rebel group.

    "Today, a decision was made during a meeting with the president of the republic [Ivan Duque] … on the dismissal of the national defense minister", the Defence Ministry wrote on Twitter late on Wednesday.

    The scandal erupted after it was revealed that the operation against the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) group, which was portrayed as successful by the authorities, led to the death of not only 14 militants but eight minor children believed to have been recruited by force.

    The defence minister was also accused of manipulating information and photo evidence for Colombia's dossier for the United Nations on the situation in neighboring Venezuela.

    Botero, 71, was appointed as the defence minister by Duque.

    However, critics have said he has limited security expertise since Botero, a lawyer and a founder of the national business federation FENALCO, has worked as an entrepreneur for most of his life.

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    Tags:
    scandal, Cover Up, killings, FARC, resignation, defense minister, Guillermo Botero, Colombia
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