Colombia and Venezuela on Wednesday signed an agreement to cooperate in the struggle against narcotics trafficking.
The deal aims to facilitate information-sharing between authorities in the neighboring countries, as well as cooperation to combat money laundering and control substances used in the production of drugs.
The two countries will also share their experiences in “alternative development” in order to prevent the cultivation of illegal crops, according to a Ministry of Defense press release.
Colombia’s Defense Minister Rodrigo Rivera, who signed the accord along with Venezuela’s Defense Minister Tarek El Aissami, said “Today is a great day for our peoples, and we will reap great victories against organized crime.”
“We will strengthen our cooperation to protect our natural resources and our youth, and prevent drug use,” said the Colombian minister.
The officials met in Venezuela’s Canaima national park to finalize the deal, which has been under discussion for many months.
El Aissami stated that “We want our country and our border free of drug trafficking … Colombia can count on Venezuela’s commitment to combat drug trafficking.”
In a historic August meeting in Santa Marta, which followed a long freeze in relations, Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos and his Venezuelan counterpart Hugo Chavez agreed to cooperate on issues relating to security around their shared border.