The Venezuelan government has announced that it will re-open the air bridge with the Caribbean islands of Aruba, Curaçao, and Bonaire, collectively known as the ABC Islands, to allow those in the country to return to their respective countries safely.
The decision comes after Venezuelan president, Nicolas Maduro, announced suspending all air and sea travel with the ABC islands for 72 hours as a measure against smuggling of the Venezuelan gold, silver, and copper through the islands.
Tareck El Aissami, Venezuela's Vice President, said in a tweet that a meeting to combat contraband would be arranged with the islands' authorities to discuss the issue.
"High-level meeting with the authorities of these islands" will be arranged to come up with "a plan of action to combat the mafias" who steal and smuggle our goods, he wrote.
"We are not going to allow any further aggression from these criminal organizations, and we urge that the inaction that fosters impunity be abandoned,” El Aissami said in a statement.
Premier of Aruba, Evelyn Wever-Croes, said, "There are close economic, cultural and family ties between the Caribbean islands and Venezuela. The one-sided closing of the border has a very negative impact,” according to the Curacao Chronicles.