Colombia reiterates apologies but denies violating Ecudorian territory
www.chinaview.cn 2008-03-08 11:44:06   Print

An image on a screen in the press room shows Dominican President Leonel Fernandez (C) standing between Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe (L) and Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, after they agreed to resolve the crisis set off by an attack on a FARC guerrilla camp inside Ecuadorian territory by the Colombian armed forces last week, at the 20th Group of Rio Summit in Santo Domingo March 7, 2008.

An image on a screen in the press room shows Dominican President Leonel Fernandez (C) standing between Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe (L) and Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, after they agreed to resolve the crisis set off by an attack on a FARC guerrilla camp inside Ecuadorian territory by the Colombian armed forces last week, at the 20th Group of Rio Summit in Santo Domingo March 7, 2008. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
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    SANTO DOMINGO, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Colombian President Alvaro Uribe on Friday reiterated his apologies to Ecuador for his country's cross-border attack on FARC rebels, but denied violating Ecuador's territory in the process.

    Attending the 20th Rio Group summit held in Dominican Republic's capital of Santo Domingo, Uribe apologized over the issue again, but denied his Ecuadorian counterpart Rafeal Correa's charge that Colombia violated Ecuador's territory, saying that Colombia had informed Ecuador of the attack.

    Uribe also said the Colombian army bombed a base of the Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC), Colombia's largest rebel group, inside the Ecuadorian territory from Colombia's aerial territory.

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa (C) waves to people in Santo Domingo, capital of the Dominican Republic, March 7, 2008. The 20th Rio Group Summit was held in Santo Domingo March 7, during which Colombia apologized for its March 1 cross-border military operation into Ecuador, leading to the peaceful solution to the diplomatic crisis between Colombia on one side and Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela on the other. (Xinhua/Ma Guoqiang)

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa (C) waves to people in Santo Domingo, capital of the Dominican Republic, March 7, 2008. The 20th Rio Group Summit was held in Santo Domingo March 7, during which Colombia apologized for its March 1 cross-border military operation into Ecuador, leading to the peaceful solution to the diplomatic crisis between Colombia on one side and Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela on the other. (Xinhua/Ma Guoqiang)
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    He further defended his government's actions by calling FARC's official spokesman and No. 2 leader Edgar Devia alias Raul Reyes "one of history's gloomiest terrorists".

    Devia and 22 other alleged FARC guerrilla troops were killed in the Colombian government's military attack in Ecuadorian territory on March 1.

Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe (R) and Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega talk after they agreed to resolve a territorial dispute at the 20th Group of Rio Summit in Santo Domingo March 7, 2008.

Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe (R) and Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega talk after they agreed to resolve a territorial dispute at the 20th Group of Rio Summit in Santo Domingo March 7, 2008. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
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    To protest the incident, Ecuador sent troops to the border and broke off diplomatic ties with Colombia on Monday.

    The incident also prompted Venezuela to close its embassy in Colombia.

    On Thursday, Nicaragua broke off its relations with Colombia, demanding Rio Group to strongly condemn Colombia.

Venezuela to normalize relations with Colombia very soon

    CARACAS, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Friday that his country would normalize its diplomatic relations with Colombia very soon, soured days ago due to a border crisis.

    Chavez, who would soon return home from the 20th Rio Group Summit held in the Dominican Republic, said he would hold a cabinet meeting on Friday night to normalize his country's relations with Colombia. Full story

Latin American leaders shake off diplomatic crisis

    SANTO DOMINGO, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa said on Friday that the diplomatic crisis with Colombia, triggered by its cross-border raid on rebel groups operating in Ecuador, has ended with a shake of hands by the leaders.

    At a Rio Group summit that concluded here on Friday, Correa and the Dominican Republic's President Leonel Fernandez shook hands with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe. Full story  

Rio Group Summit meeting opens amid Andean diplomatic conflict

Dominican Republic's President Leonel Fernandez inaugurated on Friday the 20th Rio Group Summit meeting, calling for strengthening the development of energy and resolving regional problems.

Heads of state and delegations wave during the taking of the official photo at the 20th Group of Rio Summit at the foreign ministry in Santo Domingo March 7, 2008.   (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
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    SANTO DOMINGO, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Dominican Republic's President Leonel Fernandez inaugurated on Friday the 20th Rio Group Summit meeting, calling for strengthening the development of energy and resolving regional problems.

    The summit's theme is energy, development and natural disasters, although the diplomatic conflict triggered by Colombia's military incursion into Ecuadorian territory on Saturday is another important issue. Full story

Another Colombian guerrilla chief killed in combat

    BOGOTA, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Another chief of Colombia's rebel Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC) was killed on Friday earlier during the combats in central Colombia, military sources said in Friday.

    Ivan Rios was the second chief of the FARC to be killed in a Colombian military operation. Full story

Ecuador says to continue fighting Colombian rebels

    QUITO, March 6 (Xinhua) -- The Ecuadorian army said on Thursday it would continue to fight Colombian rebel groups operating in Ecuador although the South American nation has broken off diplomatic relations with Colombia.

    The Ecuador army would not allow foreign rebel groups to enter the country and would continue to crack down on the Colombian rebels operating in Ecuador, including the rebel Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), a senior officer said. Full story

Andean Parliament calling for dialogue between Ecuador, Colombia

    LIMA, March 6 (Xinhua) -- The Andean Parliament (Parlandino) issued the Lima Declaration Thursday, calling on Ecuador and Colombia to launch dialogue to restore diplomatic ties and resolve the crisis between the two nations.

    The Lima Declaration, released at the end of an extraordinary meeting of the Parlandino, urged the presidents of Peru, Bolivia and Chile to hold a special summit comprising the heads of states of the Andean Community (CAN) to resolve the diplomatic crisis. Full story

Editor: An Lu
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