MEXICO CITY - Colombian Foreign Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo has stated that Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro would be the person held accountable should violence break out during attempts to deliver humanitarian aid into Venezuela.

“The only aggression against Venezuela that is occurring is from Maduro’s regime itself. It violates the rights of Venezuelans to freedom and democracy. Dictator Maduro will be the one responsible if violence breaks out on the border”, Trujillo said in a video posted on Twitter.

The foreign minister also said that Colombian President Ivan Duque would participate in multilateral international efforts to support democracy in Venezuela and alleviate the humanitarian situation, using political and diplomatic mechanisms that would “restore freedom and democracy in the country”.

Trujillo also said that Duque’s government was helping gather aid for Venezuelans, but emphasised that this was not intended as a provocation, but rather as an effort to extend support to Venezuelan “brothers” in a time of crisis. Colombia also called on the Venezuelan military to pledge allegiance to opposition leader Juan Guiado and allow humanitarian aid to enter the country, Trujillo added.

Humanitarian aid is due to be delivered to Venezuela’s borders on 23 February, according to Guiado, the leader of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, who contested the 2018 election results and proclaimed himself the interim president.

Maduro, who accuses the United States of using Guiado to overthrow him, has refused to accept the aid, accusing Washington of trying to organise a coup in the country and using humanitarian aid as one of the means to overthrow his government. Maduro has already closed Venezuela’s borders with Brazil and warned of the possibility of closing the country’s borders with Colombia. Caracas has denied that there is a humanitarian crisis in Venezuela.