Colombian president to visit tense border city

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BOGOTA: Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos was scheduled to fly to the border city of Cucuta Saturday (Sunday in Manila) amid soaring tensions with Venezuela that have triggered an exodus of Colombian residents. Santos’ office said the president would visit shelters established for the hundreds of Colombians who have fled Venezuela, carrying with them their meager belongings. The crisis erupted August 19 after Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro closed the border and then declared a state of emergency following an incident in which three Venezuelan soldiers were shot and wounded by two assailants on a motorcycle. In Washington, the US State Department expressed concern about the situation, and urged both countries to resolve the dispute diplomatically.

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