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Venezuela denounces Colombia accusations on rebels

 Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro walks past images of Chile's late President Salvador Allende, center, and Nicaragua's national hero Augus...
 Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro arrivesfor a press conference in Caracas, Friday, July 16, 2010. Maduro said Venezuela's government sent ...
 Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro speaks during a press conference in Caracas, Friday, July 16, 2010. Maduro said Venezuela's government se...
 Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro speaks during a press conference in Caracas, Friday, July 16, 2010. Maduro said Venezuela's government se...

Venezuela Colombia FARC

Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro walks past images of Chile's late President Salvador Allende, center, and Nicaragua's national hero Augus...

Venezuela Colombia FARC

Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro arrivesfor a press conference in Caracas, Friday, July 16, 2010. Maduro said Venezuela's government sent ...

Venezuela Colombia FARC

Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro speaks during a press conference in Caracas, Friday, July 16, 2010. Maduro said Venezuela's government se...

Venezuela Colombia FARC

Venezuela�s Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro speaks during a press conference in Caracas, Friday, July 16, 2010. Maduro said Venezuela's government se...

Venezuela called its ambassador home from Bogota for consultations Friday to protest accusations by the outgoing Colombian government that rebel leaders are taking refuge inside its borders.
Colombian officials have long complained, mostly in private, that President Hugo Chavez has harbored leaders of its two main rebel groups.
But on Thursday, Colombia's Defense Ministry showed video, photographs and satellite images to Colombian journalists behind closed doors that it said proved the presence of rebel leaders in neighboring Venezuela.
Colombia's hard-line president, Alvaro Uribe, leaves office on Aug. 7. He's been widely credited for seriously weakening Colombia's leftist insurgencies, one of which killed his father in a botched 1983 kidnapping.
Because he has frequently feuded with Chavez, many Colombians believe the renewed accusations show Uribe's dissatisfaction with the olive branch that Colombia's president-elect, Juan Manuel Santos, has extended to Chavez.
Trade between Venezuela and Colombia has fallen 70 percent in the past year since Chavez froze relations over Colombia's signing of an agreement with the United States granting Washington expanded access to its military bases.
In a news conference Friday, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro accused Uribe's government of trying to "destroy the possibilities of an advance" in relations.
Chavez called Uribe a "mafioso" also during a Friday speech. But he said he is adopting a wait-and-see approach to Santos.
Chavez said earlier this week that he is considering whether he will accept Santos' invitation to attend his inauguration.
Santos on Thursday didn't comment directly on the Uribe government's renewed accusations against Venezuela, saying the people of both nations suffer when their leaders quarrel.
He has stressed the importance of mending trade relations with Venezuela that overwhelmingly benefit Colombia's food producers.


Updated : 2021-01-22 03:18 GMT+08:00