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Iran Press TV

Venezuela forces crossed border illegally: Colombia

Iran Press TV

Sat Sep 19, 2015 4:45AM

Colombia says that troops from neighboring Venezuela have entered its territory illegally, calling it an incursion.

The army of Colombia in a statement said that 15 members of Venezuela's national guard were in pursuit of a civilian.

The incursion took place nearly 1 kilometer into Colombian territory on Friday in a rural hamlet in the north eastern La Guajira province, the statement read.

The Venezuelan troops burned the motorcycle on which the individual had fled just minutes before retreating back across the border to Venezuela, according to the statement.

The statement also said that the Colombian army was considering lodging a complaint with the Foreign Ministry about the incident. Colombia sent a number of its own military to the site where the incursion happened.

Venezuela has not commented on this report yet.

Earlier this week, Colombia said that Venezuelan military jets had made incursions into Colombian airspace. Venezuela denied it, saying that there was no evidence of any such incursion.

The latest tension between the two countries comes as Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro announced earlier this week that he plans to meet with his Colombian counterpart Juan Manuel Santos next week to discuss ways to end the bitter border dispute between the two South American countries.

The crisis between the two countries began weeks ago after the Venezuelan government closed several major border crossings and deported 1,400 Colombians in what he said was a crackdown on smuggling and crime.

The Venezuelan government estimates that up to 40% of goods it subsidizes are lost to smuggling, and exacerbating shortages of key products mostly to neighboring Colombia.

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