CARACAS, Venezuela—Warning that Colombia could spark a war, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez sent tanks and thousands of troops to the countries' border Sunday and ordered his government's embassy in Bogota closed.
The leftist leader warned Colombia's U.S.-allied government that Venezuela will not permit acts like Saturday's killing of top rebel leader Raul Reyes and 16 other Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia guerrillas at a camp across the border in Ecuador.
"Mr. Defense Minister, move 10 battalions to the border with Colombia for me, immediately -- tank battalions, deploy the air force," Chavez said during his weekly TV and radio program. "We don't want war, but we aren't going to permit the U.S. empire, which is the master (of Colombia) ... to come to divide us."
Make handshakes, not war.