At least four cars and three motorcycles were set on fire on Tuesday at Colombia’s border with Venezuela following local discontent of the enforcement of strict Venezuelan counter-contraband strategies.
Taxi drivers and street vendors protested Tuesday for the strict counter-contraband measures that are being taken by Caracas which include closing the Francisco de Paula Santander and the Simon Bolivar border bridges at night.
By Wednesday morning, the violence has reduced traffic crossing the border of Colombia and Venezuela by 50%, reported Caracol Radio. The protests resulted in damages to Colombia’s tax offices. The DIAN, Colombia’s tax agency, had to suspend operations due to the manifestations.
According to El Tiempo newspaper, one of the protesters blamed the Venezuelan National Guard of being very arbitrary in the enforcement of contraband measures, not even letting a kilo of meat or rice across the border.
Colombia’s riot police, ESMAD eventually arrived to the region and retook the border bridges from the protesters.