BEIRUT, LEBANON (11:20 A.M.) – The Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro denounced Colombia for its alleged training of 1,000 mercenaries to “sabotage” the parliamentary elections scheduled in Venezuela on December 6th.

“At this time I am speaking to you, more than 1,000 mercenaries are being prepared in Colombia under the training of the Colombian National Army and the Colombian intelligence apparatus, with the knowledge, protection and support of President Ivan Duque,” Maduro said during a speech broadcast on state television.

Maduro indicated that the mercenaries are seeking to “infiltrate into Venezuela to sabotage the political and electoral climate.”

He continued: “At this time, Venezuela must activate all its intelligence, social, political, military and police protection mechanisms, because we are a country under siege, a state under constant threat, and under constant conspiracy, but here we stand.”

Venezuela cut ties with the Duque government in February 2019, after Bogota joined the 50 countries that recognized Juan Guaidó as interim president after he declared himself the leader.

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