Mérida, November 26th 2010 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – In an official statement released this week, the Venezuelan government accused the United States of provoking the ongoing conflict between North and South Korea in order to further U.S. interests in the region.
President Hugo Chavez read the statement out loud during a televised meeting of regional vice presidents of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV).
“The government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has for some time been warning of a political plan that consists of provoking incidents in the zone around the Korean peninsula...as a strategy for the perpetuation of imperialist military hegemony in the region,” read the statement.
“For peace-loving countries, it is essential to denounce the pre-meditated action of ultra-right sectors of the United States, which through certain institutions of the country such as the Pentagon, the State Department, and the CIA pursue the objective of creating diverse points of instability on the planet, as part of the necessity of maintaining the functioning of a well-oiled military industrial complex,” the statement continued.
The Venezuelan government also urged “the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea, and the countries in the area to strengthen their capacity to understand each other, with the aim of preserving peace in the region.”
The U.S. and South Korea recently initiated large-scale land, sea, and air military exercises near the disputed maritime border between North and South Korea. North Korea interpreted these exercises as a threat of war. After warning that it would respond militarily if the exercises spilled into North Korean maritime territory, Pyonyang fired artillery shells at a South Korean island near the border, killing two civilians and two South Korean soldiers and injuring nearly 20. South Korea counter-attacked with 80 artillery rounds.
According to the BBC, the North Korean government said the tensions are pushing the region “to the brink of war.” United Nations Secretary Ban Ki-Moon called the incident the worst since the end of the Korean War in 1953.
U.S. President Barack Obama called the military clash “one more provocative incident,” and pledged full support to South Korea. Obama sent a nuclear-armed aircraft carrier to the region and asked China to back South Korea as well. China released an official statement urging moderation by all parties in order to “keep the situation under control and to ensure such events do not happen again.”