The March 1 bomb attack on a Colombian rebel camp inside Ecuador has frayed ties between both countries, and briefly raised the threat of war after Ecuador and Venezuela moved troops to their borders with Colombia.Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa had warned he would take action against Colombia on Monday and tensions between the Andean neighbors remained high after Quito accused Bogotá of waging a smear campaign to tie Correa to the leftist rebels.“Ecuador asks the court to declare Colombia’s air fumigation a violation of Ecuador’s sovereignty,” Foreign Minister Maria Salvador told reporters in Quito.Ecuadorean authorities have put their case before the International Court of Justice in the Hague, she said.The minister demanded Colombia halt all fumigation near the border and pay the government compensation for more than 7 years of spraying to destroy illicit coca crops used to manufacture cocaine.Financed by billions of dollars in U.S. aid, Colombia has used aerial spraying to attack coca crops that help fuel its four-decade-old conflict. Colombia’s neighbors often charge Bogota fails to stop violence from spilling over its borders.Colombian officials are now focusing more on manual eradication of the drug crops that make the Andean country the world’s top cocaine supplier.Ecuador has repeatedly threatened to sue Colombia in foreign courts over fumigation it says hurts legitimate crops and the health of Ecuadorean farmers living along the border. Colombia rejects those charges and says spraying is safe.
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