Trump Takes Aim at Venezuela in UN Speech

Pauline Gross
September 20, 2017

The Venezuelan government rebuffed US President Donald Trump's praise to Latin American nations for supporting the "restoration of democracy" in Venezuela after a dinner at the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in NY.

"The Venezuelan people are starving and their country is collapsing". President Temer joined other Latin American leaders on the eve of the start of the United Nation's annual meeting for a dinner with U.S. leader.

The Venezuelan News Agency (AVN) branded the aggressive statements by the head of the USA administration against Iran, Syria, Venezuela and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea as demagogic, 'full of commonplaces and with a clear inversion of values'.

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has been pushing the country toward autocracy as he struggles to turn around an unprecedented financial crisis spurred by a drop in global oil prices.

The meeting was attended by Colombia's Juan Manuel Santos, Brazil's Michel Temer, Panama's Juan Carlos Varela and Argentina's vice president Gabriela Michetti. "We want it to happen very soon".

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At least 125 people have been killed in four months of protests against the Maduro government, which has resisted calls to bring forward the presidential election and instead set up a pro-Maduro legislative superbody called a Constituent Assembly that has overruled the country's opposition-led Congress.

Santos said earlier they would discuss with Trump ways to exert more pressure on the Maduro government to allow a "hopefully peaceful democratic transition". Maduro has blamed Venezuela's financial problems on an alleged "economic war" by domestic opponents and the United States.

"Evidently, everyone at the table wants a democratic solution in Venezuela, but no one wants a foreign intervention", Temer said.

Differences over ethanol trade, open-skies aviation and illegal drug production, and even North Korea, could crop up during the discussion, but the top issue will be the Venezuelan crisis, Latin American and White House officials said.

"We can't stand by and watch", he told the delegates.

Other reports by GizPress

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