The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is situated on the northern coast of South America. Home to an estimated population of 29.1 million, it covers around 916,445 square kilometres which includes the Andes mountains and the Amazon Basin Rainforest. Its main export is oil. Venezuela was colonized by Spain in 1522 but continued resistance led in 1811 to it becoming the first Spanish American country to declare independence. A chequered political history followed which saw dictatorships rise and fall, as well as military coups. The current president is founder of the Revolutionary Bolivarian Movement-200, Hugo Chávez.
Venezuela angry Colombia hosts opposition leader
Venezuelan officials are warning Colombia’s president that his meeting with Venezuela’s opposition leader could severely damage relations between the neighbouring countries.
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos on Wednesday received Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles, who is trying to build international support for his efforts to overturn an April 14 presidential election he claims was fraudulent. Capriles narrowly lost to government candidate Nicolas Maduro.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Elias Jaua told state TV that the meeting “will bring a derailment of the good relations that we have.” Parliament Speaker Diosdado Cabello compared the meeting to “placing a bomb on the train.”
Jaua says Venezuela will re-evaluate its role as an observer at the peace talks in Cuba between Santos’ government and Colombia’s biggest rebel group.