Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Friday ratified a call on his Colombian counterpart, Ivan Duque, to reestablish consular relations and cooperation on security between the two countries.

In a speech, Maduro condemned Duque’s statements rejecting the offer from the Bolivarian Government under the excuse that violence prevails in Venezuela against ‘countries that have drawn a line of rejection of the regime’.

The president noted that this justification was ‘ridiculous and false’, and recalled that Colombia does live in a violent scenario marked by the systematic assassinations of social leaders and human rights defenders, as well as para-militarism and drug trafficking.

Nearly a year after diplomatic ties with the neighboring country were severed, the Venezuelan president proposed on Thursday to reestablish relations at the consular level, in order to discuss issues of binational interest as the repatriation of Colombian fugitives and criminals captured on Venezuelan territory.

Venezuela broke off relations with Colombia in February 2019, after repeated aggressions from the neighboring country and amid violent actions in the state of Tachira that were linked to the failed attempt by the opposition to introduce humanitarian assistance with logistic and material support from Washington and Bogota.

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