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Venezuela Sees US Threat in Dutch Islands

Venezuelan President Chavez has accused the Netherlands of planning what he calls 'aggression' by allowing US troops access to Dutch islands off Venezuela's Caribbean coast.

President Chavez made the accusation Thursday during a speech in Copenhagen, where he is attending climate talks.

The Venezuelan leader provided no evidence to support his allegations that the self-governing Dutch islands were being used for a possible military attack against his country. There was no immediate comment from the Dutch government. State Department spokesman Ian Kelly was quoted by the Associated Press as calling the allegations "baseless."

The United States has long had a military presence on the islands of Aruba and Curacao, with staff involved in counternarcotics and surveillance operations over the Caribbean.

Separately, Venezuela and neighboring Colombia have been at odds over an agreement allowing the U.S. to use seven Colombian military bases for anti-drug operations.

President Chavez has called the deal a threat to his country, but the U.S. and Colombia say their agreement is aimed at anti-drug operations and does not pertain to other nations.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.