The U.S. sent a letter to all countries in South American guaranteeing that the U.S. military will not use Colombian bases to invade neighboring countries, El Espectador reported Monday.
In the letter, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere affairs Arturo Valenzuela stated that Barack Obama’s government guaranteed that U.S. military operations on Colombian bases will be restricted to Colombian territory.
The letter was sent to the Defense Minister of each country as well as to Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa.
Valenzuela added that the letter had been signed by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and U.S Defense Minister Robert Gates.
Colombia’s relationship with its neighbors has been tense since the Andean nation signed a military agreement with the U.S. allowing the North American country access to seven of its military bases.
Colombia’s neighbours, Venezuela and Ecuador in particular see the U.S. military presence as a potentially destabilizing influence in the region.
Venezuela believes the military pact undermines its sovereignty and has broken diplomatic and trade ties with Colombia.