Commercial air travel resumes between Colombia, Venezuela

Caracas, Nov 9 (EFE).- The first commercial flight between Colombia and Venezuela in nearly three years landed Wednesday at Caracas’ Maiquetia International Airport.

The 45 passengers aboard the Embraer ERJ145 jet operated by Colombian state-owned airline Satena included Colombia’s transportation minister, Guillermo Reyes.

“Today, Satena, for the first time in history, makes an international flight and not just any flight,” Reyes said after disembarking.

He described the flight as another step in re-establishing the “brotherhood between Colombia and Venezuela” following the Sept. 26 renewal of bilateral diplomatic ties severed in 2019.

Cross-border commercial air travel was suspended in March 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic took hold.

To start, Satena will fly from Bogota to Caracas every Wednesday, Reyes said, but the carrier plans to seek permission to add a weekly flight on Fridays.

His Venezuelan counterpart, Ramon Velasquez, pointed to the benefits for citizens of both countries in being able to make the trip between the respective capitals in 80 minutes and said that his government is prepared to grant permits for as many flights as needed to satisfy passenger demand.

“We have open skies,” Velasquez said.

A jet operated by Venezuela’s Turpial airlines flew from Caracas to Bogota on Monday. EFE sc/dr

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