UN chief urges dialogue to resolve Colombia-Venezuela tensions

23 July 2010 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on Colombia and Venezuela to resolve their differences through dialogue after Venezuela reportedly broke off diplomatic ties with Colombia, which accused it of harbouring rebel groups.

“The Secretary-General hopes that the differences between Colombia and Venezuela will be worked out through dialogue,” according to a statement issued by his spokesperson last night.

“He calls for restraint by all involved so that the situation can be resolved in a peaceful manner,” it added.

According to media reports, during a meeting yesterday of the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington, Colombia presented evidence that appeared to support its claim that the rebel Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army had established bases in Venezuela.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez dismissed the allegations in a televised speech later in the day, and declared that Colombian diplomats had until Monday to close their embassy in the capital, Caracas, and leave the country.


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