Venezuela's Maduro Calls for a Meeting with President Trump

Frederick Owens
August 13, 2017

Trump told reporters that he would not rule out a "possible military option" in Venezuela, which has long grappled with political and economic crisis.

Venezuela's Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino branded Trump's threat as "a insane act", on Friday.

The US has not ruled out a military option for dealing with Venezuela, where President Nicolas Maduro has been accused of trying to establish a dictatorship, President Donald Trump said Friday. You know we're all over the world, and we have troops all over the world, some that are very, very far away.

Venezuela has seen four months of violent anti-government protests, and nearly 130 people have died in clashes.

"We have many options, including a possible military option if necessary", he insisted.

In response to Maduro's actions, Peru has ordered the expulsion of the Venezuelan ambassador from Lima.

It is not clear if Maduro requested the phone call with Trump before or after the president's remarks.

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza has issued a statement on behalf of the nation in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's recent threat, vowing to defend the South American country's sovereignty at all costs against foreign hegemony.

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President Trump on August 10.

"But a military operation, a military option is certainly something that we could pursue", he said.

Trump has looked to blame the volley of threats between the United States and North Korea on past administrations, arguing that tension with North Korea was thrust upon him.

When a reporter followed up to ask Trump if this "military option" would be USA led, the president responded: "We don't talk about it".

Despite its complicated relations with Caracas, the South American trade bloc Mercosur also said that it rejects the use of force against Venezuela, Reuters reported.

In Latin America, Peru has taken the toughest stance toward Maduro as he seeks to consolidate power and crack down on anti-government protests and unrest that have left 120 dead since April.

The Trump Administration responded swiftly, placing a sanction on over a dozen Venezuelan government officials linked to Maduro.

The assembly's 545 members - all members of the governing party - would join Maduro "in defense" of the country, she added.

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