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Venezuela severs relations with Colombia following row over guerrilla havens

Thursday, July 22nd 2010 - 22:27 UTC
Full article 3 comments
President Chavez next to visiting Argentine coach Diego Maradona on making the announcement President Chavez next to visiting Argentine coach Diego Maradona on making the announcement

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez broke off his country's relations with neighbouring Colombia Thursday over allegations that Colombian rebels were operating in Venezuela.

Colombia alleged at a meeting of the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington that the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) were operating from Venezuelan territory.

Chavez accused Colombia along with the United States of hoping to wage war with Venezuela.

”The government of (Colombian President Alvaro) Uribe was militant, lying and aggressive,“ Chavez said, while meeting with Argentine soccer star Diego Maradona.
At the special meeting of the OAS, representatives from both countries exchanged accusations and strong language.

Colombian Luis Alonso Hoyos called on the government in Caracas to take immediate measures against the rebels, who have waged a decades-long battle with the Colombian government. He also called for an international commission to be sent to Venezuela.

Venezuela's ambassador to the OAS, Roy Chaderton, rejected the allegations that his government was allowing FARC to operate out of Venezuela and called for a commission to investigate US military installations in Colombia that are aimed at fighting the illegal drug trade.

The neighbouring South American countries have sparred for years over rebel groups allegedly using Venezuela as a haven and US anti-drug trafficking efforts in the region.

Uribe is stepping down from office next August 7 after eight years in office and will be replaced by his ally and former defence minister Juan Manuel Santos, who is expected to continue on the same political course.

However Santos first steps have been to distance himself from Uribe and try and establish a rational dialogue with Venezuela and Ecuador.

US State Department spokesman PJ Crowley stressed the need for both countries to ”work to reduce mutual suspicion and to fully implement their commitments under applicable anti-terrorist treaties and resolutions of the UN and OAS.“

”I don't think that severing ties or communication is the proper way to achieve that end,” he said.

 

Categories: Politics, Latin America.

Top Comments

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  • harrier61

    According to the Venezuelan foreign ministry, the allegations were intended to undermine relations between Colombia and Venezuela.

    Seems like Chavez has just admitted the allegations are true.

    Jul 23rd, 2010 - 03:48 pm 0
  • Liberty

    This leader is up to no good, not only to his neighbor Colombia but Southamerica in general. He spent millions in Russian weaponry and he is behind dreams of “Bolivarianism” which means backing leftish governments putting him in center stage. According to Colombian intelligence they have in possession videos, photos and coordinates of the camps run by the FARC'S. Argentina, Uruguay and other Southamerican governments are his allies.

    Jul 23rd, 2010 - 04:56 pm 0
  • Nicholas

    Look it that, two idiots from two failed nations... (chavez and maradona)...world champion liars, cheaters and losers..LAUGH.

    Jul 25th, 2010 - 07:44 pm 0
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