Commissioner Josh Liebman awarded the outgoing president of Colombia, Iván Duque, on Wednesday with the key to the city of South Miami in recognition of the relationship he forged with Florida communities during his administration.
Duque referred to South Miami as an “entry point” for Colombian families who have emigrated in search of “achieving their dreams” and said the gesture “demonstrates the relevance of the Colombian diaspora in South Florida and the historical ties that bind our countries and communities.”
Duque calls to respect “the rules of the democratic game”
Later, during the Concordia Summit of the Americas, Duque was awarded the “2022 Leadership Award” in recognition of the social and economic policies he carried out during his administration.
The Colombian president received the award with “humility and commitment” and stressed the importance of defending democracy in his country now that a left-wing extremist will take over the Government for the first time in history.
“We will not allow anyone to take democracy away from us,” he said during his acceptance speech.
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This Thursday, after a hectic Wednesday of diplomatic engagements, Duque met with members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to promote trade relations between the two countries.
In his speech, the Colombian president warned of the importance of defending four principles: respecting “the rules of the game” of democracy, protecting state institutions, supporting the private sector, and promoting freedom of the press.
Otherwise, said Duque, Colombia’s democracy would be weakened, regardless of “which ideology is in government.”
The President also asked Colombians to remain in Colombia in the face of the installation of a new leftist government that threatened the economy and democratic stability and pledged not to leave the country.