Diplomatic Briefing

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Newsline: Venezuela appoints new ambassador to Colombia

Venezuela’s National Assembly on Thursday approved the appointment of Carlos Eduardo Martinez, a former soldier, as the country’s new ambassador to Colombia, after Caracas’ former top diplomat to Bogota stood down in January. The Venezuelan government appointed its first ambassador, Félix Plasencia, to Colombia in August 2022 as ties between the neighboring countries strengthened after President Gustavo Petro was inaugurated in Bogota. Plasencia stood down as ambassador in January to become general secretary of ALBA, a bloc of leftist countries in the region. Martinez is a former brigadier general and represented the Venezuelan government during the first round of peace talks between Colombia and the National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrilla group. (https://www.fxempire.com/news/article/venezuela-appoints-new-ambassador-to-colombia-1286940) Martinez previously served as Venezuela’s ambassador to Argentina. Caracas broke off relations with Bogota in early 2019 after members of Venezuela’s opposition tried to cross into the country from Colombia with trucks full of food and medicine. Petro, Colombia’s first leftist president, had pledged to normalize diplomatic relations with Venezuela following years of tensions between the two countries. Diplomatic and trade relations began a process of normalization in September 2022.

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