General Douglas Fraser, head of the U.S. Southern Command, said that he had no reason to doubt the validity of evidence which allegedly shows the presence of leftist guerrillas hiding out in Venezuela.
“There is no reason to assume that [the evidence] is not valid,” Fraser said in a talk at a think-tank in Washington on Thursday.
The general, who is responsible for all U.S. military activity in Latin America said the United States was looking at the evidence, and that it was “an allegation that needs to be treated seriously.”
“What is important is that Venezuela investigate the allegations,” Fraser added, and also urged the two countries to seek a diplomatic resolution to the dispute.
The announcement follows a recent crisis in the Colombia-Venezuela relations, when Venezuela broke all ties with Colombia last week after a presentation to the Organization of American States (OAS) alleging that the socialist nation harbors guerrillas within its border.
Venezuela has strenuously denied Colombia’s accusations and said it views the affair as an attempt by Colombian President Alvaro Uribe to stir trouble before for the incoming administration of Juan Manuel Santos, who takes office on August 7.