Venezuela-Colombia border begins gradual reopening


BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Thousands of Venezuelans are crossing into Colombia to buy items they cannot purchase at home after the two countries agreed to allow the gradual, controlled reopening of the border.

Five pedestrian border crossings opened early morning for the day Saturday in the first step in the eventual full restoration of border traffic.

Venezuelans must provide their personal information and explain why they are going into Colombia.

Presidents Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela and Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia agreed Thursday to the gradual reopening of their border after the Venezuelan government closed crossings to crack down on smuggling.

The five checkpoints will now be open to pedestrians from early morning to 9 p.m. each day.

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