Venezuela to withdraw troops after Colombia border crossing | Reuters

BOGOTA Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro will withdraw troops from Colombia's side of the two countries' border, after his soldiers set up camp in the neighbouring country, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said on Thursday.Santos, speaking on television, said the incursion of about 70 Venezuelan soldiers into the Colombian border province of Arauca was "totally unacceptable."

"I have just spoken with President Maduro," Santos said. "He has assured me he has ordered the withdrawal of troops from Colombian territory."

The neighbours would work together through diplomacy until the situation on the border normalizes, Santos said, adding that he was informed of the incursion on Wednesday.

Relations between the South American neighbours have been tense for years. Venezuela has closed the border several times in a crackdown on smugglers. In 2015, it deported hundreds of Colombians it accused of criminal activities. (Reporting by Bogota newsroom; Editing by Peter Cooney)

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Updated Date: Mar 24, 2017 01:30:08 IST

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