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Venezuela meets 1st Colombia flight after ties restoration

Pedestrians use the Simon Bolivar International Bridge to cross between San Antonio, Venezuela (behind) and Cucuta, Colombia at sunrise on Aug 8, 2022, along the border which Venezuela partially closed in 2015. (MATIAS DELACROIX / AP)

CARACAS Venezuela welcomed Wednesday the first Colombian flight from Satena Airline, after the reestablishment of diplomatic and commercial relations between the two nations in August.

Venezuelan Transport Minister Ramon Velasquez met the flight at the Simon Bolivar International Airport, where he noted that a flight from the Venezuelan airline Turpial landed in Colombia on Monday.

Satena for the first time in history conducted an international flight and did so to reestablish the brotherhood between Colombia and Venezuela

READ MORE: Colombian, Venezuelan legislators meet on normalizing ties

Accompanied by his Colombian counterpart Guillermo Reyes, the minister highlighted that this was a victory for presidents Nicolas Maduro and Gustavo Petro of Venezuela and Colombia, respectively.

He stressed the importance of resuming flights "since we are formalizing air connectivity between two great fraternal peoples" that allows travel between Caracas and Bogota in less than two hours.

For his part, Reyes celebrated the flight landing and commented that Satena "for the first time in history conducted an international flight" and did so to "reestablish the brotherhood between Colombia and Venezuela."

The two countries restored diplomatic relations after Petro assumed the presidency, which led to the reopening of border crossings and the strengthening of commercial ties.