CARACAS, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- The President of Venezuela Nicolas Maduro claimed Sunday that a large wave of Colombians were entering Venezuela in order to "flee violence" in their own country.
Speaking during his weekly TV show, "In contact with Maduro," the president said "we are receiving this massive migration, a product of the continuing civil war and violence in Colombia. Yesterday, 359 people were registered at a single border crossing on the Colombia-Venezuela border."
Maduro also said he had ordered the governor of the northeastern state of Zulia, Francisco Arias Cardenas, to take all necessary measures as the border with Colombia "is very long and the situation could worsen."
However, the president expressed his sympathy with the Colombian migrants and said that the Venezuelan armed forces would respect human rights "as they did yesterday."
He said Venezuela had received "100,000 Colombian migrants...with open arms" in 2016.