This Wednesday, June 22, the president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, and the recently elected president of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, held a telephone conversation to discuss the normalization of border crossing, which has been affected by closures and traffic disruptions for almost seven years now.
Through his Twitter account, the Venezuelan head of state reported that issues “about peace and the prosperous future of both peoples” were also discussed.
Conversé con el presidente electo de Colombia @petrogustavo, y en nombre del pueblo venezolano, lo felicité por su victoria. Dialogamos sobre la disposición de restablecer la normalidad en las fronteras, diversos temas sobre la Paz y el futuro próspero de ambos pueblos. pic.twitter.com/ZK3cBE8JdO
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) June 22, 2022
Earlier, the president-elect of Colombia also posted a tweet about this important step, stressing that he had been the one to initiate contacts with the government of Venezuela to open the borders.
The heads of state of Colombia and Venezuela have not had direct communication for over three years. Gustavo Petro is set to be inaugurated on August 7. Many analysts believe that the rupture of diplomatic relations between the neighboring South American countries is due to the submissive nature of Colombia’s foreign policy, making it resemble a US colony.
“I have spoken with the Venezuelan government to open the borders and restore the full exercise of human rights on the border,” Petro wrote on his Twitter account without directly mentioning President Nicolas Maduro.
Me he comunicado con el gobierno venezolano para abrir las fronteras y restablecer el pleno ejercicio de los derechos humanos en la frontera.
— Gustavo Petro (@petrogustavo) June 22, 2022
The opening of borders and resumption of diplomatic and trade relations with Venezuela was one of Petro’s campaign promises, assuring that if he were elected he would take that step.
During a rally in early May in Cúcuta, the capital of the Colombian department of Norte de Santander where the main border connecting the cities of San Antonio del Táchira and Ureña lies, the president-elect stated: “I have to tell you that Cúcuta cannot be a city; it cannot prosper, it cannot overcome problems without opening the borders.”
El Gobierno Bolivariano de Venezuela otorga plenas garantías al pueblo venezolano y colombiano de tener pasos fronterizos seguros. En cuanto se controlen las groseras acciones de violencia contra nuestro pueblo y nuestro territorio, serán restablecida la normalidad fronteriza!
— Delcy Rodríguez (@delcyrodriguezv) February 23, 2019
In February 2019, the government of Venezuela announced the temporary and total closure of the Simón Bolívar, Unión, and Santander bridges that connect the populations of Colombia on the western border of the country, as well as the breaking of diplomatic relations. This was due to the irresponsible decision of the Colombian government to recognize the self-appointed “interim president” Juan Guaidó, together with the military provocation of illegally forcing the entry of alleged US “humanitarian aid,” creating one of the most tense security incidents between the two countries in decades, know as the Battle of the Bridges.
In a post by Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodríguez from June 2019, the Venezuelan top-authority reiterated the willingness of the Venezuelan government to “grant full guarantees to the Venezuelan and Colombian people to have safe border crossings. As soon as the gross acts of violence against our people and our territory are controlled, border normality will be restored!”
In several other occasions since then Venezuelan authorities have shown their willingness to resume diplomatic, consular and trade relations with Colombia, however all attempts were consistently rejected by the government of outgoing president Iván Duque.
(Últimas Noticias) with Orinoco Tribune content
Translation: Orinoco Tribune
orinocotribunehttps://orinocotribune.com/author/orinocotribune/December 9, 2023