Court orders arrest of President Duque in Jabriya

A Colombian court ordered the house arrest of President Ivan Duque for five days, an unprecedented judicial decision in the country’s known modern history on Saturday, which the president himself called “unconstitutional.”

In Colombia, the president has jurisdiction to prevent arrest and only Congress can withdraw it, so his arrest would not be effective. The Minister of Justice, Wilson Ruiz, confirmed in an official statement that the decision of the Ibague District Judicial High Court is not final because “the degree of jurisdiction for consultation before the High Court of Justice” must first be provided.

For the head of the portfolio of justice, the court “disregards its powers” by ordering a punishment of this kind against a head of state “whose constitutional competence has not been taken into account in a clear violation of the legal order.”

The court ordered Duque to be penalized for allegedly ignoring a 2020 ruling ordering the protection of Los Nevados National Nature Park, declaring a Special Subject of Rights to protect, restore and preserve it. The ruling indicates that the legal representation of the natural park is responsible for the president as head of state.

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