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Colombia: Gas stations on Venezuela border swamped amid rumours of shortages02:34

Colombia: Gas stations on Venezuela border swamped amid rumours of shortages

Colombia, Cucuta
June 12, 2019 at 07:59 GMT -00:00 · Published

Venezuela's ongoing petrol shortages once again impacted the Colombian border city of Cucuta as people queued for hours to refill their vehicles over fears the shortages could worsen in the following days, footage filmed on Tuesday shows.

"Queues being to grow, rumours start spreading that there is no fuel in Venezuela, and people start gathering in gas stations. It's not like there wasn't any left here, it's just that people wanted to have fuel for their cars," said fuel expert Maria Eugenia.

Venezuela, which is a member of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and has the largest proven oil reserves on Earth, has been strangled by US sanctions on its imports meaning smugglers who used to hop the border and supply Colombian residents have been cut off.

Gas station manager Alberto Moros is a benefactor of the shortages, explaining that the crisis in Venezuela has actually meant people have turned to buying gas legally: "At this moment, the truth is that we are doing very well. Supposedly, smuggling in the streets, which is our biggest competitor, has decreased."

Cucuta, which has a population of some 700,000, has been one of the cities worst affected by the migration crisis due to its proximity to the town of Urena in Venezuela, which it is connected to by the Francisco de Paula Santander International Bridge.

Colombia: Gas stations on Venezuela border swamped amid rumours of shortages02:34
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Venezuela's ongoing petrol shortages once again impacted the Colombian border city of Cucuta as people queued for hours to refill their vehicles over fears the shortages could worsen in the following days, footage filmed on Tuesday shows.

"Queues being to grow, rumours start spreading that there is no fuel in Venezuela, and people start gathering in gas stations. It's not like there wasn't any left here, it's just that people wanted to have fuel for their cars," said fuel expert Maria Eugenia.

Venezuela, which is a member of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and has the largest proven oil reserves on Earth, has been strangled by US sanctions on its imports meaning smugglers who used to hop the border and supply Colombian residents have been cut off.

Gas station manager Alberto Moros is a benefactor of the shortages, explaining that the crisis in Venezuela has actually meant people have turned to buying gas legally: "At this moment, the truth is that we are doing very well. Supposedly, smuggling in the streets, which is our biggest competitor, has decreased."

Cucuta, which has a population of some 700,000, has been one of the cities worst affected by the migration crisis due to its proximity to the town of Urena in Venezuela, which it is connected to by the Francisco de Paula Santander International Bridge.

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