- Title: Venezuelans living in Colombia protest ahead of Sunday vote
- Date: 30th July 2017
- Summary: WOMEN WITH BANNER THAT READS (Spanish): "OUT MADURO, NO MORE" IN FRONT OF SIMON BOLIVAR STATUE
- Embargoed: 13th August 2017 01:14
- Keywords: Maduro constituyent assembly Venezuelans in Colombia protest
- Location: BOGOTA, COLOMBIA
- City: BOGOTA, COLOMBIA
- Country: Colombia
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Civil Unrest
- Reuters ID: LVA0036RRSJEV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: About 100 Venezuelans gathered at the emblematic monument of heroes and statue of Simon Bolivar in Colombian capital Bogota on Saturday (July 29) to protest peacefully against the assembly vote in neighbouring Venezuela, amid opposition concerns that the election will lead to dictatorship.
Residents of the Andean country intend to show they will not recognise the result of an "illegitimate" Sunday vote. The coordinator of the popular will organisation in Colombia, Francis Howard, said they will continue to resist and demand freedom for Venezuela.
Protests also took place in other Colombian cities.
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said on Friday (July 28) Colombia cannot recognize the result of the vote and repeated calls for a peaceful solution to unrest in Venezuela.
Relations between the South American neighbours have been tense for years. Venezuela has closed the border several times in a crackdown on smugglers and it deported hundreds of Colombians it accused of criminal activities in 2015. Sunday's vote for a controversial legislative superbody, will have the power to rewrite the constitution and dissolve state institutions.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has said the election for a 545-member assembly will bring peace to the country after four months of opposition protests and clashes with security forces, in which at least 111 people have been killed. Opposition parties are boycotting the vote.
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