Venezuelan Foreign Ministry Rejects US Interventionism, Protests EU Sanctions

Venezuela has  condemned both the US and EU after the announcement of new European sanctions on top officials in Caracas earlier this week.

By Rachael Boothroyd-Rojas
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Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza tweeted the statement on Twitter. (Cancilleria_VE/Twitter)
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza tweeted the statement on Twitter. (Cancilleria_VE/Twitter)

Merseyside, United Kingdom, January 26 2018 (venezuelanalysis.com) - Venezuela’s Foreign Ministry released an official statement Thursday, slamming what it called “interventionist” comments and press releases from the White House.

Earlier this week, Vice-President Mike Pence and his spokesperson Heather Nauert made public comments categorically rejecting the Venezuelan government’s announcement Tuesday that it would hold snap presidential elections before the end of April.

On Twitter, Pence went so far as to call Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro a “dictator” and said the elections would be globally rejected. Meanwhile Nauert released a statement Wednesday predicting that the scheduled elections would be “neither free nor fair” and would be seen as “undemocratic and illegitimate” by the international community.

“This abhorrent interference in Venezuela’s internal affairs forms part of a systematic campaign of aggression by the United States government against [Simon] Bolivar’s homeland, and constitutes a flagrant violation of basic norms in international law,” read the foreign ministry statement.

The ministry went on to accuse the Trump administration of “obstinately seeking to stimulate a social conflict in Venezuela to restore violence that has been overcome in the country, with the aim of benefiting domestic political sectors subordinate to their interests”.

It also condemned the recent statement of CIA chief Mike Pompeo, who revealed last week that his office had been responsible for masterminding some of the sanctions previously approved by Washington against Caracas.

“The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela reaffirms its conditions as a free, independent and sovereign state, and calls on the supremacist and xenophobic government of Donald Trump to abandon its dark warmongering practices and destabilisation,” concluded the statement.

Meanwhile, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza also met with eleven European Union representatives in Caracas this Wednesday to register the national government’s protest with regard to the organisation’s decision to sanction seven top government officials Monday.

Arreaza branded the sanctions as “a strike against the peace of Venezuela” and as “fragile from a legal point of view and outside of all diplomatic logic”.

The sanctions are the second time that the EU has taken action against Venezuela since it approved a controversial arms embargo against the country in November 2017. Both the US and Canada had previously sanctioned a string of top-level government officials, while Washington also signed off on economic sanctions in August.

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