Venezuela's Chavez sends troops to Colombian border

Miami HeraldMarch 2, 2008 

BOGOTA _ Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez ordered 10 battalions, including tanks, to the border with Colombia and closed Venezuela's embassy in Bogota Sunday, warning Colombia not to pursue rebels into Venezuela.

''We don't want war, but we aren't ging to permit the U.S. empire nor its lapdog to come weaken us," Chávez said on his radio program.

Chávez's move came a day after the Colombian army crossed a mile into Ecuador to attack a jungle camp maintained by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, and killed its second-ranking leader, known as Raúl Reyes. FARC rebels have long been known to use remote parts of Ecuador and Venezuela to rest up, treat their wounded and resupply. Chávez also asked for a moment of silence to honor the slain FARC leader, killed along with 16 other guerrillas.

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