09:54 GMT11 July 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Colombia is rejecting Venezuela’s claims that it was involved in the failed boat invasion on Sunday, Colombia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

    "The Foreign Ministry, on behalf of the National Government, rejects the claims that have been made by the dictatorial regime of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro trying to blame our country for alleged destabilization events", the ministry said on Sunday.

    The ministry claimed that the Venezuelan government is trying to deflect attention from the real problems in Venezuela, from the "internal crisis" it is facing.

    The Venezuelan military was on a heightened level of alert on Sunday after foiling a pre-dawn boat attack by armed men described by the government as Colombian militants.

    Interior Minister Nestor Reverol said the attackers tried to invade the northern state of La Guaira on high-speed boats. Eight militants were killed and two others were captured, one of them was an agent of the US Drug Enforcement Administration, Reverol said.

    The Venezuelan Defenсe Ministry said it had seized weapons similar to those used in a failed coup attempt on 30 April. The military searched the sea bottom near the beach where the attack took place for more weapons after one of the boats capsized.

    Russian Ambassador in Caracas Sergey Melik-Bagdasarov said that the attempted boat invasion was organized in order to bring weapons to Venezuela to be later used to destabilize the situation in the country and stage a coup.

    "It is widely known, and several media have reported on this multiple times, that in areas bordering Venezuela special military training camps are operating where they train militants, including former Venezuelan servicemen, deserters, who gave in for the promised 10,000 dollars. However, instead of a generous reward for their betrayal, they were recruited, convinced that now they need to free their homeland from dictatorship", Melik-Bagdasarov explained.

    The Russian ambassador added that the United States supports the armed groups that organize various acts of sabotage and terror in Venezuela.

    "On the night of 3 May, the Venezuelan security forces stopped another attempt to illegally import into the Venezuelan territory a batch of weapons used to organize terrorist attacks, various sabotage acts, and destabilize the situation in order to overthrow the legitimate government of Venezuela led by Nicolas Maduro. So who are these criminals who staged another coup attempt?" Melik-Bagdasarov said, adding that "it is such mercenaries - the products of a factory of terror and murder, fostered with the support of the US - that comprise such armed groups, one of which was neutralized today".

    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has repeatedly denounced groups receiving support from Colombia and the US, accusing them of seeking “to undermine the stability of our homeland with violent actions”. Last month, Maduro announced the mobilization of artillery in strategic areas to protect the country from incursion.

    Tags:
    invasion, Venezuela, Colombia
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