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A liberal politician and journalist from Colombia, Luis Carlos Galán Sarmiento ran for the Colombian presidency two times. He also founded the political movement New Liberalism in 1979. Luis was a prominent member of the liberal movement in Latin America, and his political work has been celebrated both in his country and internationally. Here are some things you might not know about him. Read on to find out. And remember, you're not alone in thinking this way!
Galan was only 27 when he was elected Minister of Education. His two-year tenure was marked by progressive social policies. After leaving the education ministry, he was appointed ambassador to Italy and to the UNCTAD in New Dehh. He also served as the Colombian representative to the FAO. He later went on to become the country's foreign minister and head the Foreign Ministry. However, his greatest contribution to the nation's foreign policy is his political activism.
Although his death was an unplanned tragedy, it was a part of a much more elaborate plan. The first attempt on Galan's life was foiled by a neighbor who reported suspicious behavior. However, the second attempt proved fatal. Galan's security team had received a tip that assassins were headed to Bogota. They warned Galan to change his schedule, but he refused. In spite of the warnings, he was shot by an assassin in the crowd. The assassination was witnessed by an estimated ten thousand people, and it was televised to millions of Colombians.
In the late seventies, Nuevo Liberalismo became a distinct political force. This prompted Galan to leave his journalism career and devote himself to politics. He was elected as councilman in Bogota in 1980. In 1981, he was named Nuevo Liberalismo's presidential candidate. He ran for president in 1982 with 745,000 votes, but was defeated by conservative candidate Belisario Betancur.
Although his political ascent was limited, he was an important figure in Colombian politics. He was an outspoken opponent of drug trafficking and a vocal supporter of an extradition treaty with the United States. However, this failed and Galan was killed during a political rally in Soacha, Cundinamarca. While he was a popular politician and a strong advocate of the extradition treaty with the United States, his death has made his political legacy unstoppable.
While it was unlikely that Galan had anything to do with his assassination, it did make his death even more significant. As a result of this murder, the Colombian government and United States government have developed a closer relationship. In the early nineties, Colombian authorities and US officials forged closer bonds, and the drug trade was tackled by the government. And with those results, the Colombian drug cartels were forced to surrender, and the United States stepped in to take action.
Moovit is a free transit app that makes riding to Plazoleta Luis Carlos Galan in Bucaramanga, Colombia easy. With live directions and maps, Moovit makes it easy to navigate through your city and find the best bus or train time to get you where you want to be. And with over 930 million users worldwide, Moovit is the best choice for getting around town. There's no better way to explore Bucaramanga!
The murder of Galan and another top Colombian government official is unsettling. Although the government was quick to arrest Escobar, two senior judges were murdered the week before Galan was killed. One of them, Appeals Court judge Carlos Ernesto Valencia Garcia, had issued arrest warrants for two of the cartel's bosses - Escobar and Rodriguez. Upon hearing of the deaths, fifty of the 55 appeals court judges resigned and thousands of judges went on strike. In response to these attacks, the Colombian government responded in force. They arrested thousands of cartel members and reinstituted the US extradition treaty.
The late eighties were a period of unprecedented bloodshed in Colombia. The assassination of many public figures, including Justice Minister Rodrigo Lara Bonilla, El Espectador director Guillermo Cano, presidential candidate Jaime Pardo Leal, and other politicians, were only a few of the tragedies that struck the country during this period. Despite the turmoil, Galan returned to politics in 1988. He was a front-runner for election in Colombia's 1990 election.
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