Venezuela announces capture of invading paramilitaries

Caracas, Jun 10 (EFE).- Venezuelan authorities apprehended armed intruders who apparently entered the country from neighboring Colombia, President Nicolas Maduro said.

"We have captured two bands of paramilitaries who came to attack our Venezuela," he said on Twitter.

Praising the work of the security services in detecting the invaders, Maduro said that Venezuela's interior minister, Gen. Miguel Rodriguez, will provide more detailed information on the episode.

The announcement came a few days after Maduro reiterated accusations that Colombia's former president, Alvaro Uribe, is leading a plot against the government in Caracas.

The Venezuelan head of state also alleged that current Colombian counterpart Juan Manuel Santos knew of Uribe's activities and failed to alert Caracas.

Relations between Colombia and Venezuela, which reached a nadir toward the end of Uribe's 2002-2010 tenure, have improved dramatically under Santos, despite the broad ideological gulf that separated him from the leftist government of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

The picture darkened after the April 14 special election to choose a replacement for Chavez, who died March 5 after a long battle with cancer.

Opposition candidate Henrique Capriles refuses to accept his narrow loss to Maduro, Chavez's designated successor, and has been seeking support from outside Venezuela.

Maduro's administration reacted angrily after Santos received Capriles.

An April 2002 coup that unseated Chavez for two days enjoyed foreign backing.