- Title: Venezuelans living in Colombia protest ahead of Sunday vote
- Date: 30th July 2017
- Summary: OLDER MAN SHOUTING SLOGANS AT END OF NATIONAL ANTHEM VENEZUELANS GATHERED TO PROTEST AGAINST SUNDAY VOTE BANNER WITH CARTOON OF VENEZUELAN PRESIDENT NICOLAS MADURO (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) COORDINATOR OF POPULAR WILL IN COLOMBIA, FRANCIS HOWARD, SAYING: "Independently from what will happen in Venezuela tomorrow, the constituent (assembly) is a fraudulent process that Venezuelans will not respect. We'll protest, wherever we are and will continue to resist and we'll continue to ask for freedom for our country." GENERAL VIEW OF VENEZUELANS GATHERED AND PROTESTING VENEZUELANS PROTESTING IN FRONT OF SIMON BOLIVAR STATUE VARIOUS OF GATHERED VENEZUELANS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) COORDINATOR OF POPULAR WILL IN COLOMBIA, FRANCIS HOWARD, SAYING: "A group of criminals are in power at the moment and they want to stay there no matter what happens because they know they will have to pay for crimes against humanity they have committed. They know they will pay because they are involved in drug trafficking and all the crimes they are committing and have been committing for a while in our country."
- 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: LVA0026RRSJEV
- 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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