>> 5,000 troops to Columbia, those words scrawled in clear view on the notepad of White House Security Advisor John Bolton as tensions soar between the US and Venezuela are raising questions whether the US might be planning to dispatch US forces to its South American ally. Photos of the pad quickly circulated online Monday after Bolton appeared in the White House briefing room to announce new sanctions against Venezuela's state-owned oil firm PDVSA, President Donald Trump's latest step pressuring socialist president Nicolas Maduro to leave office.
White House correspondent, Steve Holland is on the story>> The White House response is very cryptic. They said that all options are on the table. They wouldn't say whether this was a live option or not. But since then, we've heard from the Pentagon. They say there are no plans to change the military footprint in that area.
We're told that nothing is eminent, that this is not a formal proposal.>> It remained unclear Tuesday what Bolton's notes meant or if flashing the notes in front of reporters was intentional. Acting Defense Secretary, Patrick Shanahan, suggested he was in the dark, as was Colombian Foreign Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo.
>> The reason and importance of said annotation is unknown.>> The US already has some military in Columbia, but they're part of a preexisting partnership.>> They do wanna send a message that Venezuela better protect the United States diplomats there, or there will be a significant response.>> The notepad mystery comes as the Venezuelan government on Tuesday sought a travel ban and to freeze the accounts of opposition leader Juan Guaido, who proclaimed himself interim president last week with Trump's backing.
Maduro has accused Guaido of staging a US directed coup against him and warned Trump to stay away>> Donald Trump, hands off Venezuela.>> Bolton denounced Venezuela's actions as threats, saying on Twitter, there will be serious consequences for those who attempt to subvert democracy and harm Guaido.