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Two militants shot down on Venezuela-Colombia border

(Source: Xinhua)   2015-09-09

  CARACAS, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) -- Two people believed to belong a Colombian paramilitary group were shot down Tuesday after a confrontation with Venezuelan soldiers and police on the Venezuela-Colombia border, officials said.

  The individuals allegedly belonged to the Colombian drug-trafficking paramilitary gang "Los Rastrojos," said Jose Vielma Mora, governor of the western state of Tachira.

  He said that the gang had "taken up arms" against the military and police commission that operate in the region bordering Colombia's northeastern city of Cucuta to safeguard security.

  After the confrontation in the border city of Ayacucho, Vielma Mora said the commission confiscated two firearms, stolen motorbikes and other stolen objects as well as uniforms used for paramilitary practices.

  Since Venezuela deployed intense military force in regions bordering Colombia, seven alleged paramilitary troops have been killed in confrontations with Venezuelan army and police, the governor said.

  Venezuela's aim is not to gun down alleged criminals but to subject them to appropriate legal actions, Vielma Mora said.

  "We will not rest until these paramilitary members are captured alive while avoiding confrontation at all costs," the governor said.

  In the past few days, eight members of "Los Rastojos" were apprehended, Vielma Mora said.

  The border crisis between Venezuela and Colombia erupted on Aug. 19 when three Venezuelan army officers were wounded by suspected paramilitary gunmen operating in Colombia, which led to the closure of a major border crossing with Colombia in the state of Tachira.

  Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro declared a state of emergency in the state of Tachira on Aug. 21 and on Monday extended the state of emergency to another three municipalities in the western state of Zulia.

Editor:Zhang Tao
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