July 3, 2020 / 9:43 PM / a month ago

Colombia attorney general denies wrongdoing after taking wife, daughter on trip

BOGOTA, July 3 (Reuters) - Colombia’s Attorney General Francisco Barbosa on Friday denied he acted improperly by taking his daughter, her friend and his wife with him to the Caribbean island of San Andres last weekend while he carried out official duties.

The Andean country remains in a national lockdown declared by President Ivan Duque in late March to curb the spread of coronavirus. Though certain restrictions have been relaxed, inter-city and air transport remain closed to the public.

Barbosa said his minor daughter accompanied him to the island, which is a popular beach destination, and denied the trip served as a family holiday.

“I would never expose my daughter to health concerns,” he told reporters. “There were no restaurants, no shops, no beaches - there was absolutely nothing.”

Barbosa has been the subject of derision on social media since the trip came to light.

The attorney general said taking his daughter on the trip did not break lockdown rules and that she was in public spaces.

“Anytime I have the opportunity to travel with my daughter and family, I will,” he said.

Barbosa is not the first official to cause outrage by appearing to break quarantine rules during the global coronavirus pandemic.

Dominic Cummings, close aide of U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, traveled 400 km (250 miles) from London to the northern English city of Durham in March with his four-year-old son and his wife, who was sick with suspected COVID-19 at the time, to be close to relatives.

Reporting by Oliver Griffin

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