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Colombian President Ivan Duque apologises after police cadets dressed as Nazis

Colombian President Ivan Duque apologises after police cadets dressed as Nazis for a ‘cultural exchange’ event in honour of Germany

  • Cadets dressed as Wehrmacht, SS with a red swastika, put on Hitler moustaches
  • A replica luftwaffe plane, copies of Nazi firearms, swastikas decorated the event 
  • President Ivan Duque apologised for the stunt Friday, terming it  ‘unacceptable’


Colombia’s President Ivan Duque apologised on Friday after police cadets dressed up as Nazis for a ‘cultural exchange’ event in honour of Germany.

Photos of the ceremony were shared Thursday on an official police Twitter account.

In it, students are seen dressed in the grey-green uniform of the Wehrmacht, one of them sporting a small, Adolf Hitler-style moustache.

Others are dressed in the black uniform of the SS, complete with the red swastika armband.

The black, red and yellow German flag and balloons in the same colours decorated the venue that also featured a replica Luftwaffe plane, copies of Nazi firearms, and swastikas on the table cloths.

Colombia’s President Ivan Duque apologised on Friday after police cadets dressed up as Nazis for a ‘cultural exchange’ event (pictured) in honour of Germany

The black, red and yellow German flag and balloons in the same colours decorated the venue that also featured a replica Luftwaffe plane and copies of Nazi firearms

 The black, red and yellow German flag and balloons in the same colours decorated the venue that also featured a replica Luftwaffe plane and copies of Nazi firearms

Students are seen dressed in the grey-green uniform of the Wehrmacht, one of them sporting a small, Adolf Hitler-style moustache (centre)

Students are seen dressed in the grey-green uniform of the Wehrmacht, one of them sporting a small, Adolf Hitler-style moustache (centre)

Two police officers in Colombian uniforms inaugurated the event by cutting a ribbon, the pictures showed.

‘From the SimonBolivar police academy in the city of Tulua, we are organising an #InternationalWeek with guest country #Germany. 

‘With these cultural exchanges, we are strengthening the knowledge of our police students,’ proclaimed the police Twitter account.

The photos were met with a mixture of anger and incredulity on social media, provoking deep embarrassment for the authorities.

‘Any apology for Nazism is unacceptable and I condemn any demonstration that uses or refers to symbols referring to those responsible for the Jewish Holocaust that claimed the lives of more than 6 million people,’ Duque said on Twitter on Friday.

The police dismissed the head of the academy.

'Any apology for Nazism is unacceptable and I condemn any demonstration that uses or refers to symbols referring to those responsible for the Jewish Holocaust that claimed the lives of more than 6 million people,' President Ivan Duque (pictured) said on Twitter on Friday

‘Any apology for Nazism is unacceptable and I condemn any demonstration that uses or refers to symbols referring to those responsible for the Jewish Holocaust that claimed the lives of more than 6 million people,’ President Ivan Duque (pictured) said on Twitter on Friday

The Defense Ministry, under whose umbrella the Colombian police falls, said in a statement that its training guidelines ‘do not envisage in any way an activity such as the one which took place yesterday.’

The German and Israeli embassies in Bogota issued a joint statement expressing ‘total rejection of any form of apology or demonstration of Nazism.’

Under fire internationally for its brutal suppression of anti-government protests earlier this year, the Colombian police has embarked on a ‘transformation’ campaign to improve its image, which will include a uniform change.

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