Diplomatic Briefing

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Newsline: Colombia rejects Venezuelan proposal to resume diplomatic relations

Colombia rejected a proposal to resume diplomatic relations with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s government on Thursday, amid a dispute over a fugitive former Colombian congresswoman who was captured in Venezuela. Maduro abruptly cut diplomatic relations with neighboring Colombia last February after Colombian President Ivan Duque helped Venezuelan opposition politicians deliver humanitarian aid to their crisis-stricken country. Colombia, like the majority of Western democracies, recognizes Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as the country’s legitimate president. “We see little possibility to provide consular and other services in Venezuela, plainly and simply because of the constant aggressions doled out by the dictatorship against many countries that have rejected it,” Duque told journalists Thursday. (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-colombia-venezuela/colombia-rejects-venezuelan-proposal-to-resume-diplomatic-relations-idUSKBN1ZT30R) Maduro proposed the resumption of consular relations between the countries on Wednesday, as Colombia seeks the extradition of former Colombian congresswoman Aida Merlano. Merlano was detained in January in Venezuela’s Zulia state, which borders Colombia, four months after she escaped custody in Venezuela.

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