Pentagon Says U.S. Military Once Trained Colombians Implicated in Haiti Assassination Plot

© Fernando Vergara/AP Colombian Armed Forces Commander Gen. Luis Fernando Navarro speaks to the media in Bogota on Monday regarding the alleged participation of former Colombian soldiers in the assassination of Haiti's President Jovenel Moïse.
© Fernando Vergara/AP Colombian Armed Forces Commander Gen. Luis Fernando Navarro speaks to the media in Bogota on Monday regarding the alleged participation of former Colombian soldiers in the assassination of Haiti’s President Jovenel Moïse.

Some of the former Colombian servicemen arrested after last week’s assassination of Haiti’s president previously received U.S. military training, according to the Pentagon, raising fresh questions about the United States’ ties to Jovenel Moïse’s death.

“A review of our training databases indicates that a small number of the Colombian individuals detained as part of this investigation had participated in past U.S. military training and education programs, while serving as active members of the Colombian Military Forces,” Lt. Col. Ken Hoffman, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement to The Washington Post.

The Pentagon’s review is ongoing, Hoffman said. He did not say how many of the men received training or precisely what it entailed.

Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.), whose legislation provides oversight of foreign defense aid used in human rights abuses, said the episode was a grim reminder that U.S. assistance to other countries can take unexpected turns.

“This illustrates that while we want our training of foreign armies to build professionalism and respect for human rights, the training is only as good as the institution itself,” Leahy said.

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Source: Alex Horton, the Washington Post