Colombia and Venezuela restore diplomatic relations

Colombian Ambassador Armando Benedetti met with Venezuelan authoritarian leader Nicolas Maduro at the Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas on Monday.

“At this hour, I am received by President Nicolas Maduro, to whom I present diplomatic papers as Colombia’s ambassador to Venezuela. We talked about the urgency of renewing ties of friendship that would never have had to be broken,” Benedetti tweeted, posting several photos. of himself with Maduro.

Venezuelan Ambassador to Colombia Felix Plasencia is due to meet Colombian President Gustavo Petro in the coming days.

The two countries have not maintained diplomatic relations since 2019, when then Colombian President Ivan Duque recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate head of state.

However, Colombia and Venezuela were part of the same country in the 19th century and share deep historical and cultural ties.

Reviving relations with Venezuela was a campaign promise from Petro, who took office on August 7 and is the country’s first leftist president. Petro has also sought to forge international ties with new progressives, such as the US Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Venezuela is one of the most vocal enemies of American policy in the Western Hemisphere. Colombia, meanwhile, is a close ally of Washington, and US troops regularly conduct joint operations with their Colombian counterparts.