Univision: the US pulls visas of 4 officials close to Dominican leader
Santo Domingo.- The United States has cancelled the visa of president Leonel Fernandez’s two top security officials, former Armed Forces Minister Manuel de Jesus Florentino, and a former Chief of the National Police, according the US network, Univision.
The revelation comes after months of speculation on allegedly cancelled visas of senior officials, while the allegation against Florentino dates back to Fernandez’s first term in office (1996-2000).
The network said the US State Department’s measure affects Fernandez’s personal assistant and National Investigations Department (DNI) director Victor Crispín Zorrilla, the head of his security detail, general Héctor Medina Medina and former National Police chief Rafael Guillermo Guzman.
Univision Chief investigative reporter Gerardo Reyes, speaking exclusively to the local news network SIN, said they’ve tried to obtain a response from those affected, without results.
He said that several weeks ago he investigated the case and that there’s no political agenda in the denunciation. “I want to clarify that this is based on entirely reliable sources. We were in the Presidency and in the National Investigations Department today to get their versions and they didn’t respond us.”
Local newspaper Hoy reports it tried to get the US Embassy’s reaction, to which its Press attaché Judith Ravin said, “Given the confidentiality of the visa files we generally cannot provide information on particular cases, except to the bearer of the visa.
“The State Department has sweeping authority to revoke visas. This authority is typically exerted when, after the issuing of a visa, information surfaces which indicates that the bearer of the visa could be inadmissible to the United States or ineligible to receive a visa,” Ravin said, quoted by Hoy.