Colombia deployed its Army on the border with Venezuela due to the latest clashes between the Venezuelan FANB and Colombian armed groups.
This measure was adopted on Thursday following orders given by the Colombian Ministry of Defense, as a result of the clashes that have taken place in recent days between the Bolivian National Force (FANB) and Colombian paramilitary groups.
Likewise, the Colombian Minister of Defense, Diego Molano Aponte, reported on the same day on his Twitter account that the Security Council has been summoned to meet in Arauca next Saturday, in addition to the military leadership, the Police, the Arauca governorate, and seven mayors from the area, allegedly with a view to forging an alliance in pursuit of citizen security and humanitarian assistance.
The commander of the Eighth Division of the Colombian Army Mauricio Zabala offered, for his part, some details in this regard, arguing that the aim of sending troops is to guarantee the security of Venezuelan citizens who—according to their narrative—are fleeing the conflict and seeking refuge in the department of Arauca.
The clashes between members of the FANB and Colombian armed groups began last Sunday, when Colombian criminal groups perpetrated an armed attack against the Venezuelan population of La Victoria, in the border state of Apure, an action that was condemned on Thursday by Venezuela’s National Assembly (AN).
Relations between Colombia and Venezuela have deteriorated considerably in recent years. Bogotá seconded the US in its decision to recognize the leader of the Venezuelan opposition Juan Guaidó, who appointed himself “interim president” of the Bolivarian Republic in January 2019. Colombia has launched direct attacks against Venezuelan sovereignty like the forced entry of alleged humanitarian aid in February 2019, or May 2020’s Operation Gideon, which the Colombian Public Ministry recently acknowledged was organized in Colombian territory.
Caracas accuses Bogotá of training “mercenaries and terrorists” to enter Venezuela in order to overthrow the legitimate president of the Bolivarian Republic, Nicolás Maduro. In this context, last Sunday the Venezuelan president ordered the Army to maintain “zero tolerance” towards armed groups that enter Venezuela from Colombia.
Featured image: Colombian soldiers stand guard during a military operation on the border with Venezuela, near Cucuta, Colombia, February 13, 2018. (Photo: Reuters).
(HispanTV) with Orinoco Tribune content
Translation: Orinoco Tribune