CARACAS, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan Vice President Jorge Arreaza on Tuesday called for greater civic-military cooperation to stabilize the economy, the Venezuelan News Agency (AVN) said.
Arreaza stressed that civic-military unity is fundamental to national economic stability and to safeguarding popular right to have access to goods and services, the AVN said.
Speaking at a seminar in Caracas, the vice president stressed the need for a unified front against anti-government tactics designed to destabilize the economy, including the creation of shortages to spark inflation.
"We are all responsible for ... protecting the integrity and security of our nation," Arreaza told the seminar participants, who were to discuss ways to combat price hikes and scarcity of goods.
Last week, the government announced border measures designed to prevent the smuggling of state-subsidized and price-controlled food and fuel from Venezuela into Colombia, where they are sold at prices much more higher than their purchasing prices.
"Smuggling harms industry, it harms the economy," said Arreaza, accusing those who have opposed the anti-smuggling measures "of having direct links to contraband groups or having an interest in destabilizing the Venezuelan economy."
Vladimir Padrino Lopez, head of the Armed Forces Strategic Operational Command, said the military was fighting the scourge, especially in states bordering Colombia.