Colombia President announces diplomatic break with Israel over Gaza conflict

Colombian President announces diplomatic break with Israel over Gaza conflict
Colombia's President Gustavo Petro | Reuters

Colombian President Gustavo Petro has announced his intention to sever diplomatic ties with in response to its actions in Gaza. The decision follows Petro's strong condemnation of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government's policies. Petro has also expressed a desire to join 's legal case against Israel, accusing it of genocide, at the International Court of Justice.

Speaking to a crowd in Bogota during a march to commemorate International Worker's Day and endorse his social and economic reforms, Petro declared the forthcoming termination of diplomatic relations with Israel. He cited Israel's leadership as “genocidal” and emphasized the need for countries to take a stand against events in Gaza.

In response to Petro's announcement, Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz accused him of being antisemitic and filled with hate. Katz characterized Petro's decision as a reward to the militant group Hamas, which had orchestrated a deadly attack on Israeli military bases and communities on October 7.

This move by follows Bolivia's decision to sever relations with Israel in October of the previous year. Additionally, other Latin American nations, including Chile and Honduras, have recalled their ambassadors from Israel in response to similar events in Gaza.

  • Reporting by Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Sandra Maler

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