Donald Trump’s comments about the possibility of a military intervention against Venezuela, prompted several Latin American states to respond by voicing their discontent.
Peru, Mexico and Colombia criticized Trump’s remarks, saying it was against UN principles. The regional organization of Latin American countries, Mercosur, rejected the use of force against Venezuela.
Peru’s Foreign Minister Ricardo Luna said: “All foreign or domestic threats to resort to force undermine the goal of reinstating democratic governance in Venezuela, as well as the principles enshrined in the U.N. charter.”
At the same time, Venezuela Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said Venezuela rejected ‘hostile threats’ from Washington, and called for Latin American to unite against the U.S.
“We want to express gratitude for all the expressions of solidarity and rejection of the use of force from governments around the world, including Latin America,” he said on Saturday.
“Some of these countries have recently taken positions absolutely contrary to our sovereignty and independence but still have rejected the declarations of the U.S. president.”
Previously, the White House said Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro requested a phone call with Trump on Friday, but was rejected. According to the White House, Trump would speak with Maduro once ‘democracy was restored’.
Venezuelan Defense Minister called Trump’s threat of military force: ‘an act of craziness. It is an act of supreme extremism. There is an extremist elite that rules the United States.”
As a soldier, I stand with the Venezuelan armed forces, and with the people. I am sure that we will all be on the front lines of defending the interests and sovereignty of this beloved Venezuela,” the minister said.
The recent increase in tensions between the U.S. and Venezuela was exacerbated by Trump’s hostile rhetoric, as well as the worsening situation in the Latin American country, struggling with political instability and economic crisis.
Following the death of Hugo Chavez, Venezuela has been experiencing a period of protracted political upheavals, with the opposition pitted against Chavez’s heir, Nicolas Maduro.
Venezuela has one of the largest oil reserves in the world, but it’s economy – heavily dependent on oil exports – has been damaged by the low oil prices.
Photo Credit: Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters