The United States has banned Paraguayan politicians Édgar Melgarejo, Jorge Bogarín and Vicente Ferreira from entering the country because of their alleged involvement in corruption, the State Department announced Thursday.
This sanction is in addition to those already imposed by the government of Joe Biden on other Paraguayan ministers such as the current president of the country Hugo Velázquez, or the former president Horacio Cartes (2013-2018).
At the end of February, the Paraguayan Prosecutor’s Office announced that it had received a report requested by the US government regarding the alleged corruption charges against Hugo Velázquez, but declared that the information was “not enough” to make a decision. investigation against the official.
EDgar Melgarejo, head of the National Directorate of Civil Aviation of Paraguay; Joge Bogarín is a member of the Magistrates’ Jury, and Vicente Ferreira is currently the Judicial Officer.
State Department spokesman Vedant Patel explained that these sanctions “Melgarejo, Bogarín and Ferreira” and their family members are ineligible to enter the United States due to their “participation in acts of corruption.”
A spokesman for the US diplomat warned that “those who interrupt the progress of democracy through wrong actions” in Paraguay will be strengthened.
“The United States stands with the people of Paraguay in favor of democracy and the rule of law and will continue to support those who abuse public power for personal gain,” he said.
For his part, the US ambassador to Paraguay, Marc Ostfield, stated this Thursday that sanctions and institutions against officials in Paraguay have “nothing to do with the state” in the South American region, immersed in a proselytizing campaign with a general view. elections on April 30.
In an appearance before the press, Ostfield stated that the actions taken by the US are “unilateral” and seek to protect its borders and economic system.
“Today’s actions, US sanctions and designations have nothing to do with the state,” he declared.
In his statement, the diplomat warned that Paraguay is “a great country with potential”, but corruption is “damaging that potential” as well as the possibility of foreign investment, democratic governance and inclusive economic development.
Regarding the meeting that the Paraguayan Foreign Minister, Julio César Arriola, will have on March 27 in Washington with the Secretary of State, Antonio Blinken, Ostfield indicated the opportunity to speak “frankly” about the relationship between the two countries.