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Colombia wants EU to recognise its COVID travel pass by end of year

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By Euronews
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Colombia's Vice President, Marta Lucía Ramírez at a meeting with EU officials
Colombia's Vice President, Marta Lucía Ramírez at a meeting with EU officials   -   Copyright  European Commission
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Colombia wants to bring its vaccination certificate in line with the European Union before the end of the year, according to the country's vice president.

Marta Lucía Ramírez told Euronews during a visit to Brussels that she is committed to giving freedom of movement to citizens who are fully vaccinated.

"We have stated in all our meetings that we agree with this digital control of the vaccination process. The important thing is that all vaccines are accepted, meaning all vaccines which are certified by the United States Food and Drug Administration and European entities," Ramírez said.

"And yes, obviously the vaccination certificates. Colombia also already has its own app to digitally display its vaccination. So, we have to ensure that the different digital systems work effectively together and that we can really circulate freely all citizens who have had their double dose of vaccines."

The Latin American country, which wants to vaccinate 70% of its population before the end of October, is not part of the list of countries to which the EU is open for non-essential travel.

But in addition to the challenge of vaccination, Colombia has the second highest number of refugees in the world, after Turkey.

Bogotá promised to host two million Venezuelans, but Ramírez insists that the country is on the edge.

"We do not have time. We cannot continue wasting time with dialogue that does not guarantee the return of democracy," the vice president told Euronews. "If there is democracy there are no refugees."

For this reason, she asks the European Union to act to restore democracy in Venezuela as fast as possible.

"Nobody in Europe wants to be a bystander who allows the dictatorship [in Venezuela] to consolidate power. On the contrary, we want an active Europe that really guarantees that there is a return to democracy in Venezuela," Ramírez said.

In recent months, Colombia has also welcomed Haitian and Cuban refugees and has recently promised to temporarily receive 4,000 Afghans before they settle permanently in the United States.