Colombia says ‘no’ to US bases

Amid reports of a deal reached for the establishment of US military bases in Colombia, the country’s foreign minister says there is no need for more American personnel.

In an effort to reassure other South American countries, Foreign Minister Jaime Bermudez told the BBC that Colombia seeks only “information, technology, intelligence” in the form of military cooperation with the US.

“We don’t need personnel, we need more information, technology, intelligence – that’s the key issue… Those who fight best in Colombia are our own soldiers. We don’t need American soldiers to do this.”

“We are not going to have American bases in Colombia. Today we have 71 military personnel from the US,” Bermudez said.

His remarks come as South American nations feel threatened by what is considered as ‘suspicious intentions’ of their northern neighbor.

He, however, said while it is important for his country to stay in good relation with its neighbors, especially Venezuela, Colombia appreciates US help.

The minister said the US has been helping Colombia in fighting “narco-traffickers and terrorists.”

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