Increased US military presence in Colombia tenses relations with Venezuela

22 de julio de 2009

Hugo Chávez, president of Venezuela, criticized a plan to increase US anti-narcotic operations in Colombia by using some of the air and naval bases present in the Latin American country. Chávez said that it is a “threat” to his country and admitted he will have to “review our relations” with the government in Bogotá.

Colombia’s minister of Foreign Affairs, Jaime Bermúdez, said that the cooperation deal which is currently being planned with United States is an internal issue and should not concern neighboring states. “Some third countries have expressed some concern regarding the agreement. We have always said that this agreement applies exclusively to Colombia”, so Bermúdez. “We have never had a position that could be seen as an interference in the internal affairs of other countries”.