Containers that for two years have been blocking passage across the main border bridge between Venezuela and Colombia in the middle of a road political and diplomatic conflict Venezuelan authorities deported them on Monday.
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A forklift was towing a metal obstacle painted in national colors crisscrossed over the Simon Bolivar International Bridge linking Venezuela. San Antonio del Tachira with CúcutaIn Colombia, it left a trail of dirt and marks on the asphalt, an AFP journalist confirmed.
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According to military sources, the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has not yet clarified the scope of the measure, which will extend to further steps with the neighboring country.
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It is not clear if free movement will be allowed on this bridge, which was very fluid until it was closed. About 40,000 people crossed each day in 2019.
“lamOr the promised is the city of TachiraFreddy Bernal said,protector“The state, as it is called, has the parallel powers that Maduro created to govern the countries ruled by the opposition.
Bernal aspires to rule in the next regional elections next November. Venezuelan soldiers began work on Sunday night, removing the metal fences that blocked the road to the Simon Bolivar Bridge.
The government ordered the blocking of binational steps at the beginning of February 2019, in the throes of entering food and medical supplies run by opposition leader Juan Guaido, recognized as interim president of Venezuela by more than 50 countries led by the United States. countries and Colombia.
Obstacles and a strong military presence prevented the shipment from entering Cúcuta on February 23., which caused severe disturbances from the Venezuelan side. Maduro, who had cut diplomatic ties with Bogota over his recognition of Guaido, ordered the border closed, claiming the donations were a pretext to “invade” the United States.
The lockdown has been extended due to the COVID-19 pandemic, although many have continued to cross the corridors – unofficial crossings – on this porous 2,200-kilometre border. And despite the fact that in June Bogotá decided to unilaterally open its land and river borders with Venezuela, the corridor is still not fluid due to restrictions imposed by the Venezuelan authorities.
“It is time for us to be free to pass and come and go quietly and undisturbed, as we have always been as brothersRafael Gomez, the owner of a parking lot in San Antonio, told AFP, ensuring that the closure of the border affected the economy of the region.
“We’re broke!” “It will be a gift for Colombians and Venezuelanssaid Jesus Prada, a laundry worker.
France Press agency