Combating crime in the border area between Colombia and Ecuador will be a priority on the countries’ renewed diplomatic agenda, reports newspaper El Espectador Monday.
“Security is one of the priorities in the management of bilateral relations in this moment,” Colombian Ambassador Fernando Arboleda Ripoll said in an official statement in the Ecuador’s capital, Quito, shortly after arriving to his new post.
The diplomat told reporters that this issue encompasses both controlling “the penetration of illegal armed groups” as well as “crime in general.”
Arboleda pointed out that the neighboring countries already have institutions in place to combat crime on their 450 mile shared border, including the Bi-national Border Commission (Combifron) “that performs tasks together focused on overcoming these aspects of security.”
Diplomatic relations between the two Andean nations were restored on November 26 after they broke down more than two years ago when Colombia carried out raid on a FARC camp Ecuadorian territory.
Ecuador’s new ambassador to Colombia Raul Vallejo took office in Bogota on January 5. Ecuador dismantled 125 FARC camps in Ecuador in 2010, according to Vallejo. He added that he hopes to convert the troubled border region into a “border of peace.”