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The Colombian police chief rejects the condom as "abortive" and blames gays for HIV among officers


Henry Sanabria turns to the Bible again in a striking interview that narrates exorcisms in the public force. President Petro says he will talk to him about his religious fundamentalism

Colombian Police General Henry Sanabria in Bogotá on January 16, 2023.Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The devoted director of the Colombian Police, Henry Sanabria, has become a stone in the shoe for the Government of Gustavo Petro.

The uniformed man has irritated feminist groups, LGBTI groups, human rights organizations and, in general, defenders of the secular State on more than one occasion.

In the latest cover story of Semana


, which has been circulating since this Saturday, he manages to do it once again by rejecting condom use as "abortive" and blaming the LGBTI community for HIV among the agents.

Sanabria also narrates exorcisms in public force operations as part of his fight against "the devil", in an extensive and striking interview dotted with Bible verses, through long passages more typical of a priest than of a general.

The general, one of the public figures who most expresses his beliefs in Colombia, assures that he "loves" being attacked for his religiosity.

“The existence of the devil is certain.

I have seen it, I have perceived it, for many it is a fable and others do not believe.

And that's fine because, let's say, the devil says so, he denies himself," Sanabria tells journalist Vicky Dávila.

She also denies having removed police officers from the institution for having been unfaithful, although she points out that "I wish they could."

The Police director's beliefs include opposition to same-sex marriage, euthanasia and abortion – which he considers a “very serious sin” – in expressions seen as anti-rights that go against decisions of the Constitutional Court.

“Unfortunately, since there are so many of us, there is a large LGBTIQ community in the institution,” Sanabria tells the magazine, noting that there are some 12,000 police officers with HIV.

“The more they criticize me, they sanctify me.

I don't suffer.

I like being attacked and even more so if it is for faith, ”he assures in another passage, although he emphasizes that he feels“ appreciation from the president and the Government ”.

His statements are known, precisely, in the midst of rumors about his departure.

"I have no news that he has resigned," President Petro declared this Saturday to the journalists accompanying him at the Ibero-American Summit in the Dominican Republic,

Juan Diego Quesada

reports from Santo Domingo .

“The discussion has to do with two issues.

One, his religious beliefs, which have to be respected.

We would not persecute anyone for a religious belief.

The other thing is the separation that there must be from the official and his beliefs.

May the belief not end up affecting.

We know of the general's belief, but we try to ensure that this belief does not affect "his work," the president tried to settle.

Asked if the troops are discouraged, Petro said that he has not received any complaints, "but it is an issue that we are going to discuss with him."

In other matters more typical of a Police director, Sanabria describes as a "kidnapping for extortion" the recent retention of 79 uniformed men by protesters in Caquetá, a confusing episode that has earned fierce criticism of the Government.

However, he explains that he agreed that the Minister of the Interior, Alfonso Prada, used the controversial expression "humanitarian fence" with the purpose of freeing the police officers.

He also points out that Iván Márquez, the former peace negotiator of the extinct FARC guerrilla who took up arms, is still in Venezuela, with very serious injuries after having suffered an attack with explosives.

He also denies that the Colombian public forces participated in the operation in which his comrade-in-arms Jesús Santrich died on the other side of the border,

The general has been surrounded by controversy since before he even took over as director.

Last year, feminist organizations rejected his appointment and pointed him out for the alleged persecution of young people from impoverished neighborhoods, street vendors and LGBTI people when he was chief of the Police in Cartagena, between 2019 and 2021. Shortly after, he caused controversy when he opposed the Halloween celebrations for considering them part of a pagan festivity that a message he shared on WhatsApp described as a "satanic strategy".

More recently, on March 8, he once again collided with feminism by turning to the Bible to commemorate International Women's Day and writing on his social networks that "the charm of a woman makes her husband happy."

In the interview on Saturday, he reaffirms his assessments,

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Source: elparis

All news articles on 2023-03-25

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