MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) – Two Venezuelan soldiers died after stepping on a landmine during an operation against Colombian militancy near the national border, Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino said Thursday.
This comes after on Saturday, Venezuela’s defense ministry said several fighters from Colombian armed groups had been killed and multiple others had been taken into custody during an operation in Apure State, near the Venezuela-Colombia border, which was launched one week ago.
“With a deep pain we report the death of senior sergeant Andriel Isturiz Sojo… and junior sergeant Jesus Alexander Vasquez Perez,” the minister said in a statement.
Nine other soldiers were wounded in what the defense ministry called an act of terrorism. The personnel were taken to a military hospital.
The Venezuelan government launched Operation Bolivarian Shield 2021 on March 21 in an effort to root out militants from the border area. Venezuela says they are trying to control the border with a tacit approval from Bogota, who they accuse of sponsoring the armed groups.