On Sunday, Venezuela’s Deputy Foreign Minister Rander Peña Ramírez welcomed the new Ambassador of Colombia to Venezuela, Armando Benedetti, in Caracas, signaling the resumption of bilateral diplomatic ties after a three-year break.
Last Friday, the helicopter of President of Colombia Iván Duque was struck by multiple bullets as it approached the airport of the city of Cúcuta, capital of the Norte de Santander region, located on the Venezuelan border. No passengers were injured by the small-arms fire, although Duque’s government released photographs showing the helicopter’s exterior lacerated by bullet holes. The attack occurred in the context of escalating levels of violence in Colombia—as the landmark 2016 peace deal signed with the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) lurches unsteadily toward its fifth anniversary—and record-low approval ratings for President Duque.
The reactions to former President Álvaro Uribe’s arrest hints toward deep divisions within the country, the body politic, and within families across Colombia.
The rise of violence in Colombia highlights the complexity of implementing a peace agreement and how the absence of war does not necessarily guarantee peace.