News

US Appeals for Dialogue in Colombia-Ecuador Dispute

Multimedia

Audio

The United States Monday appealed for a diplomatic solution of the dispute between Colombia and Ecuador spurred by Colombia's cross-border attack against FARC rebels inside Ecuador. The State Department called on Venezuela to stay out of the affair. VOA's David Gollust reports from the State Department.

State Department officials say they hope Colombia and Ecuador can resolve the dispute bilaterally or through the Organization of American States, the OAS, while saying there is no reason Venezuela should be involved militarily or in any other way.

Tensions between Ecuador and Colombia have been running high since Saturday when Colombian troops conducted a raid just inside Ecuador. Seventeen FARC rebels were killed, including one of its top commanders, Raul Reyes.

The situation was complicated Sunday when Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who has been an antagonist of Colombian President Alvaro Uribe and the Bush administration, said he was sending troops to the Colombian border in support of Ecuador.

State Department Deputy Spokesman Tom Casey said the United States has long considered the FARC, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, a terrorist organization and supports the Bogota government's efforts against it.

At the same time, he expressed support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ecuador and all the countries of the region under the OAS charter, and said the OAS, which is due to convene on the matter in Washington Tuesday, would be a useful forum for resolving it.

The spokesman said the only way Venezuela can be helpful in the situation is by adding its voice to those supporting of a diplomatic resolution:

"This for us is an issue between the governments of Colombia and Ecuador," he said. "We believe it's appropriate for them to work that out through diplomatic discussion. And our hope would be that other countries would act on this issue to the same extent, that what they would do would be encourage the parties sit down to work it out. I don't really see that there is any particular role for any other country, certainly not a military role for them in this issue."

Officials here said the United States has not observed the military buildup President Chavez says he ordered along the Colombian border and suggested his remarks on the issue were mainly political posturing.

Tensions between Colombia and Venezuela have been on the rise in recent months, amid friction over intervention by Mr. Chavez on behalf of hostages held by the FARC, and complementary remarks he has made about the rebel group.

Colombia's government says documents recovered from the computer of the slain rebel leader show links between the leftist rebels and the government of President Chavez. Colombia says it plans to share the documents with the OAS.

State Department spokesman Casey said the Bush administration understands and fully supports Colombian efforts to respond to the challenge posed by the FARC, which he said has "made life miserable" for the Colombian people for more than two decades.

He said he was unaware of any U.S.-Colombian collaboration in Saturday's attack into Ecuador and said U.S. officials learned of it only after it had occurred.

 

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Interneti
X
Mike O'Sullivan
June 30, 2015 8:20 PM
Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.

VOA Blogs