Venezuela "rescues" 8 soldiers kidnapped by Colombian gunmen
The Venezuelan Ministry of Defense announces today the rescue of eight Venezuelan soldiers that were captured by Colombian armed groups.
Today, Monday, Caracas announced the rescue of 8 Venezuelan soldiers kidnapped by an armed group present on the Colombian border.
"8 soldiers kidnapped by illegal Colombian armed groups were rescued," read a statement from the Venezuelan Ministry of Defense, stressing that the rescued soldiers were "safe."
The statement also indicated that the army was searching for two missing soldiers, with no further details.
The statement also thanked everyone who contributed to the rescue mission and vowed to continue fighting organizations that use "our sacred national lands to commit cross-border crimes that affect peace, development, and stability in the country."
On May 15, Venezuela condemned the "kidnapping" of eight soldiers by Colombian armed groups at the border.
Venezuela did not name the armed groups that it held responsible for the kidnapping and only described them as "terrorists", also linking them to drug smuggling groups or to Colombian President Ivan Duque.
However, Colombian security sources indicated that the perpetrators of the operation were most likely defectors from the disbanded Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).
Venezuela and Colombia, which share a 2,200-kilometre border, cut diplomatic ties in January 2019 after Bogota recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela's president in place of Maduro after a disputed election.