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  • Venezuela's Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez, speaks during a meeting with representatives of the countries from the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA), in Caracas August 10, 2015.

    Venezuela's Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez, speaks during a meeting with representatives of the countries from the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA), in Caracas August 10, 2015. | Photo: Reuters

Published 30 August 2015

The Venezuelan Foreign Minister issued a statement Sunday defending her country’s immigration policies.

The Venezuelan government released a statement Sunday insisting the United States refrain from interfering in the ongoing talks between the Venezuela and Colombia over the closure of the border.

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodríguez issued a statement via Twitter in response to criticisms made Saturday by U.S. State Department Spokesman John Kirby, who criticized the Venezuela’s decision to deport roughly 1,000 undocumented Colombians.

The Venezuelan Foreign Minister defendRF her country’s immigration policy, replying that Venezuela is home to more than 5 million Colombian’s, and is host to the highest number of Colombian refugees in the region, totaling 173,600 according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

Venezuela is one of the few countries recognized internationally for having immigration policies that are profoundly respectful of human rights.

As many as 3,000 Venezuelan soldiers are currently deployed at the border of Colombia, after 3 Venezuelan soldiers were shot by paramilitaries in the state of Tachira. According to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, there are more than 30 Colombian paramilitary groups operating in Venezuela.

Colombia’s notorious paramilitary groups are accused of mass human right violations in Colombia, while Venezuelan officials say the groups are responsible for carrying out various illegal operations in Venezuela, including drug trafficking and kidnappings as well as politically motivated assassinations.

The Venezuelan border operations have sought to clamp down on the criminal groups and activities, with several paramilitary heads captured already. On Sunday, Tachira Governor Jose Vielma Mora announced the arrest and deportation of an individual sought by Colombian authorities.

Dangerous Colombia criminal detained in San Cristobal (in Tachira) who is sought by law enforcement in their country. They will be deported Governor Vielma Mora confirmed.

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