Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro has denounced US President Donald Trump’s “Nazi-style” rhetoric in which he threatened the Latin American country’s military forces with dire consequences if they continue to stand with Maduro’s elected government.
Speaking to a crowd in Miami on Monday, Trump urged the Venezuelan military to drop their allegiance to Maduro; otherwise, he said, they would “find no safe harbor, no easy exit, and no way out. You’ll lose everything.”
Maduro responded to Trump’s “arrogant orders” to the Venezuela military in a televised speech on Monday, asking, “Who is the commander-in-chief of the Bolivarian national armed force? Donald Trump from Miami?”
“They believe with their arrogance and their contempt of us… they believe themselves to be owners of the country, and Donald Trump believes in the power to give orders and that the Bolivarian national armed forces will carry out the orders [by] him,” Maduro said.
He said he had authorized Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez “to respond with all the morality of our national Bolivarian armed forces to Donald Trump, the head of the empire.”
The Venezuelan military has remained loyal to Maduro — who won a second six-year term in the presidential election last year — amid a political and economic crisis gripping the country.
Maduro has repeatedly accused the Trump administration of pushing for a coup d’état in Caracas.
The US administration has offered strong backing for Venezuelan opposition figure Juan Guaido, who has declared himself “interim president” of Venezuela and welcomed US threats of potential military intervention in the Latin American country.
Trump once again said on Monday that his administration stood behind Guaido and called on the military to allow humanitarian aid into the country.
Maduro, however, said that what Washington and the Venezuelan opposition call a humanitarian crisis “is nothing but a cover-up for military plans of the Trump government.”
Trump has already threatened Venezuela with military action.
Cuba: US seeking war of oil plunder
Trump’s speech in Miami also drew a response from Cuba, whose Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez took to Twitter, saying Trump’s “offensive” rhetoric only “confirms the threat of military aggression against Venezuela.”
“Humanitarian aid is a pretext for a war of oil plunder,” he added.
Rodriguez also accused Trump of trying to install a “puppet” president in Venezuela.
Russia to legally deliver aid to Caracas
Maduro said on Monday that Russia would deliver 300 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Caracas on Wednesday.
“We receive humanitarian support every day,” the Venezuelan president said. “On Wednesday, 300 tonnes of Russian humanitarian aid will be legally delivered to the international airport of Caracas.”
The oil-rich country is facing an economic crisis, including in the form of shortages of foodstuff and medicine. The government has acknowledged the shortages and has been trying to adequately resupply those items.
Argentinians slam US meddling in Venezuela
Meanwhile, hundreds of Argentinians on Monday denounced US interference in Venezuela by marching on the American Embassy in Buenos Aires.
Demonstrators called on Washington to keep its hands off Venezuela. A speaker read out a statement which warned that “people will severely judge any new imperialist military intervention in the region.”
‘US hypocrisy affecting all of Latin America’
In an interview with Press TV, David Yaghoubian, a professor of history at the CSU San Bernardino University said Washington was seeking regime change in Venezuela “to control the resources of an oil producing country.”
“The United States is truly all over the map here in terms of its hypocrisy,” Yaghoubian said.
He further said the Trump’s administration’s push to oust the government of Venezuela is apparently “affected by the United States engaging in some bizarre interpretation and incorrect interpretation of the Venezuelan constitution as if the United States values foreign countries’ sovereignty or their constitutions.”