Colombian President Álvaro Uribe congratulated his Venezuelan
counterpart Hugo Chávez Monday for his victory in Sunday’s referendum
that allows the leftist leader to be re-elected indefinitely.
Uribe, currently on an official visit in Brazil, denied seeing the victory of Chávez as a threat to democracy.
“I will respond positively with a feeling of brotherhood with the Venezuelan people and I want to publicly congratulate President Chávez for the democratic victory and the Venezuelan people for participating in a referendum,” Uribe said.
Uribe and Chávez have been working on improving the relation between their governments after the right wing Uribe attacked a FARC camp on the territory of Venezuela’s left wing ally Ecuador in March 2008. Colombian authorities said they found proof in that camp of Venezuelan support of Colombia’s largest rebel group.
Colombia’s Interior and Justice Minister Fabio Valencia Cossio earlier Monday said that Colombia “has to respect” the choice of the majority of Venezuelans to allow Chávez to run for office again.