Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Friday he hopes Colombia’s next president will “respect the sovereignty” of its neighbors, and that diplomatic relations will remain frozen until a new Colombian government is in place later this year, reports Colombian media.
Speaking at a meeting with Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa in Quito, Chavez expressed a hope that the election of a new president of Colombia will re-open diplomatic relations between the neighboring countries.
“We expect the government to recover its compass and to respect international law, and to reject [George. W.] Bush’s theory of preventative attack, pursuing what they call ‘terrorism’ wherever they want to find it, a madness that has already substantially damaged this part of the world,” said Chavez.
He added that he expects Colombia’s next administration to be “a serious government, which respects, and if it respects it will be respected.”
Diplomatic and trade relations between Colombia and Venezuela have been virtually frozen since last year, when Colombia signed an agreement with the U.S. that allows the Americans to use Colombian military bases and civilian airports for counternarcotics and counterterrorism missions.