Chavez: Ready to cut ties with Colombia

Aug 26--Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he is preparing to break off diplomatic relations with Colombia over the neighboring country's plan to allow U.S. troops access to its military bases.

26 de agosto de 2009

"It is going to happen," Chavez said on Tuesday in a state broadcast. "We are going to prepare for this, because the Colombian bourgeoisie hates us. And now, it just isn't possible to make up. No, it is impossible.

"The agreement of the seven bases is a declaration of war against the Bolivarian Revolution," Chavez added, referring to his socialist political movement, which he named after 19th-century Venezuelan leader Simon Bolivar.

Relations between the two countries have been tense since Colombia entered into negotiations with the United States to allow its troops to operate from seven bases.

Colombia says the troops will tackle drug traffickers and leftist guerillas. And the United States says it needs the bases because Ecuador has ordered the closing of a U.S. installation there.
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