March 19, 2018

Venezuela rejects Trump talk of military option

13 August 2017, 07:19 | Glen Norman

Venezuela rejects Trump talk of military option

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- Venezuela's government energetically rejected U.S. President Donald Trump's talk of a potential "military option" to resolve the country's political crisis on Saturday, calling it the most egregious act of belligerence against Venezuela in a century and a threat to stability in the region.

"The people are suffering and they are dying".

On Friday, U.S. President Donald Trump threatened #Venezuela with #Military Intervention, escalating U.S. response to the crisis now going on in the country, a move Caracas described as "craziness". "President Trump will gladly speak with the leader of Venezuela as soon as democracy is restored in that country".

Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino called Trump's talk of possible military action a "crazy act".

Venezuela's foreign minister said Mr Trump's words had been hostile and disrespectful and risked destablising Latin America.

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The comment marked a serious escalation in rhetoric for the United States and threatened to undermine Washington's efforts to rally regional support to isolate Maduro.

Trump has explained that he takes these meetings in the name of diplomacy, arguing that it is best to at least have a dialogue open even with those who may be your opposition.

"We reiterate that the unilateral economic sanctions imposed against the Venezuelan people are a flagrant violation of global law and human rights, as well as an unacceptable interventionist implementation, whose only goal is to directly hinder the Bolivarian people and government of Venezuela in order to change the regime", the declaration stated. Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, who has led Latin America in taking on Maduro, recalled the country's ambassador to Caracas after the government-packed supreme court took steps to shut down congress, which is controlled by Venezuela's opposition.

Earlier this week, the Trump administration imposed new sanctions on Venezuela, targeting members of the new all-powerful constituent assembly.

Among the first steps taken by the ANC, which is empowered to modify and update the country's constitution, was the creation of a Commission for Truth, Justice, and Reparation for Victims to investigate that right wing violence which has created chaos in the country and invited meddling in Venezuelan affairs by external forces.

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The single-session equity put/call ratio jumped to 0.83 - the highest since April - and the 21-day moving average rose to 0.65. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, popped almost 11 percent to 11.02.

The attack dramatically ratcheted up tensions in Venezuela's long-running crisis, raising the prospect it could spill into some form of armed conflict.

"No. I don't think so", McMaster said. "Provocative statements by @realDonaldTrump on North Korea and Venezuela are reckless", said Rep. Ted Lieu.

"Mr. Donald Trump, here is my hand", he said.

These two very different responses to the convening of the National Constituent assembly demonstrate the divisions and current rudderless nature of the opposition in Venezuela.

Arreaza closed by reiterating Maduro's interest to have a conversation with Trump.

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