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Venezuela’s Maduro rejects US interventionism in UN speech

27 September 2018 17:32

Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro has rejected US interventionism in the Latin American country, saying Washington opposes Venezuelan independence and determined to stop it at all costs.

Speaking at the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on Wednesday, Maduro also accused the United States and its allies of trying to assassinate him to end Venezuela’s “socialist revolution” and seize the country’s vast oil and mineral wealth.

US President Donald Trump had said in his own address to the Assembly a day earlier that a military coup could topple the Maduro government, also describing the Venezuelan government as “a repressive regime responsible for a human tragedy.”

Maduro also said the US “wants to continue giving orders to the world as though the world were its own property.”

“From this very rostrum, a threat was issued yesterday to governments of the world that orders should be obeyed and the US policy should be followed or else those countries would suffer from the consequences,” Maduro added.

On Tuesday, the Trump administration imposed financial sanctions on four members of Maduro’s inner circle, including his wife and Venezuela’s vice president, over allegations of corruption.

US targets Maduro’s inner circle with new sanctions

The US has imposed new sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s wife and several of his top allies.

The Venezuelan president condemned the “illegal unilateral sanctions.”

He also said the US was using its currency to weaken Venezuelan economy.

“Today, the leader of the US announced new actions against our country. The use of the domination of the exchange rate is illegal from the perspective of international law,” Maduro said.

The socialist leader also referred to the assassination attempt against him in August said perpetrators had had links to US allies.

The Venezuelan president had earlier accused the governments of Chile, Colombia, and Mexico of having been involved in the assassination attempt against him in the capital, Caracas.

Maduro: Chile, Colombia, Mexico aided assassins

Venezuela’s president accuses the governments of Chile, Colombia, and Mexico of having been involved in an “assassination” attempt against him last month.

Maduro said the attempt had been “the most serious attack our country has seen in its political history because of its implications,” adding that, “They wanted to decapitate the entire high command.”

Maduro said 28 people had been convicted of the “terrorist plot,” inviting the United Nations — and even the FBI — to investigate the assassination attempt “and discover the truth.”

Venezuela migration issue ‘fabricated’

Venezuela, once among Latin America’s richest countries, is in a fourth year of recession. Economists at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have forecasted a potential inflation rate of one million percent for Venezuela this year.

The UN says about 2.3 million Venezuelans have left their home country since 2015, more than 500,000 only this year, mostly for Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, in search of a better life.

The Venezuelan president insisted that the migration issue had been “fabricated” as part of a broader economic and political war to topple his administration.

Maduro ‘willing’ to meet Trump

Despite his harsh rhetoric against the US, Maduro welcomed the US president’s expression of openness to holding a meeting with Maduro and find common ground, saying he and Trump “certainly have our differences, but that is what we have to dialog about.”

Maduro said he “would be willing to shake hands with the president of the United States to discuss the issues of our region. I am willing to discuss with him any topic that he is willing to address, with honesty and humility.”

The Venezuelan government had not announced whether Maduro would be traveling to the US for the General Assembly. On Wednesday, reports came out that he would.

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