Tensions with Venezuela Rise Over New Colombian Military Base

December 21, 2009 By Andrew OReilly

Over the past weekend, Colombia announced it plans to build a military base near the country’s border with Venezuela, according to a story by Agence France Presse.

“It is a strategic point from a defense point of view,” said Defense Minister Gabriel Silva.

The base, located in Colombia’s Guajira peninsula, will hold up to 1,000 troops as well as function as a care facility for the indigenous Wayuu people of the region. It will cost $1.5 million and be paid for by Colombian tax funds.

Besides the construction of the base, the Colombian military announced Saturday that it would activate six air battalions, including two close to the border with Venezuela. These two moves, along with the U.S.- Colombia Defense Cooperation Agreement, have helped tensions rise between Colombia and it’s neighbor, Venezuela, according to the BBC.

Both Venezuela and Colombia recently made remarks that an armed conflict between the two nations is possible, Reuters reports.

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