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In the middle of the chaotic Saturday, Nicolás Maduro decided to break relations with Colombia, what repercussions will there be?
Many had faith that on February 23 humanitarian aid was going to enter Venezuela. However, the day was marked by riots, reprisals against the civilian population, trucks full of aids on air, and several soldiers deserting the Bolivarian National Guard. As if all the above was not enough, the government of Nicolás Maduro decided to break relations with Colombia.
Leer en español: Medidas absurdas: Venezuela le dice adiós a Colombia
"I have decided to break all political and diplomatic relations with the fascist government of Colombia and all its ambassadors and consuls must leave in 24 hours from Venezuela. Get out of here, oligarchy!" Maduro said. of the countries that have been closest, trying to solve the humanitarian, social and political crisis in the hands of international organizations such as the Lima Group.
#ANUNCIO| “He decidido romper todas las relaciones políticas y diplomáticas con el gobierno de Colombia ¡Les doy 24 horas a sus representantes diplomáticos para salir del país!”, informó el conductor de victorias @NicolasMaduro #VenezuelaEnDefensaDeLaPaz
— Prensa Presidencial (@PresidencialVen) 23 de febrero de 2019
You may be interested in reading: Venezuela: What happened with the humanitarian aid and what is the country's future?
Maduros' choice consequences
The first thing that must be taken into account is that the Colombian government does not recognize the government of Nicolás Maduro as legitimate. As expressed by both Colombian Foreign Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo and Vice President Marta Lucia Ramírez on his Twitter account, "Maduro cannot break diplomatic relations that Colombia does not have with him. Our government has not appointed an ambassador there nor do we recognize Maduro's ambassador, since his term ended on January 9. He is a simple dictator who forcibly occupies Miraflores."
Querida @patriciajaniot Maduro no puede romper relaciones diplomáticas que Colombia no tiene con él. Nuestro gobierno no ha nombrado embajador allá ni reconocemos embajador de Maduro pues su mandato terminó el 9 de enero. Es un simple dictador que ocupa por la fuerza Miraflores https://t.co/ze1NGfVfng
— Marta Lucía Ramírez (@mluciaramirez) 23 de febrero de 2019
Bearing this in mind, politically speaking, the relations between both countries were not finished, because the Colombian government recognizes uan Guaidó's government. In addition, it is important to keep in mind that when relations between two countries break, the diplomatic representation leaves the country, but in this case and as Julio Londoño Paredes, excanciller and dean of the Universidad del Rosario, asserts, El Tiempo "had not diplomatic relations between both countries, they were only at the consular level". Similarly, since mid-2017 Bogotá has no relationship with the Maduro government.
The Venezuelans, the most affected
Given the decision of Maduro, there is no doubt that Venezuelans are the most affected because with this ruling, according to El Espectador, "70,000 people daily pass the border line to look for products and medicines." However, with the closure of the borders, Venezuelans will have to look for the different illegal roads that arrive in Colombia to be able to supply or even stay in the country.
According to entities such as Colombia migration, it will be difficult to have the official record of how many Venezuelans enter the country, since these illegal entries are roads that can be through any point of the border between both countries.
— Migración Colombia (@MigracionCol) 24 de febrero de 2019
In the same way, and as mentioned before, the departure of the four consuls means that they will no longer be able to help Colombians in Venezuela, nor Venezuelans who want to process their visas to enter Colombia.
This is how the Colombian government will continue to respond to the call of the government of Juan Guaidó, who has been recognized as interim president of Venezuela since January 23. Therefore the announcement of Maduro will have little or no importance in relationships that were weakened since 2017.
LatinAmerican Post | Laura Viviana Guevara Muñoz
Translated from "Medidas absurdas: Venezuela le dice adiós a Colombia"