On 7/18/2017 4:58 PM, jat wrote: part of the story as usual
The Latest: Trump warns Venezuela of 'economic actions'
Published July 17, 2017
CARACAS, Venezuela – The Latest on Venezuela's political confrontation
(all times local):
President Donald Trump is threatening "strong and swift economic
actions" against Venezuela's government if the its ruling party goes
ahead with plans to rewrite the country's constitution.
Trump says in a strongly-worded statement that, "The United States will
not stand by as Venezuela crumbles." He says "If the Maduro regime
imposes its Constituent Assembly on July 30, the United States will take
strong and swift economic actions."
The opposition says more than 7 million Venezuelans voted on Sunday in a
symbolic referendum rejecting a plan to rewrite the constitution and
consolidate the ruling party's power over the country, which has been
stricken by shortages and inflation.
Trump says the Venezuelan people "again made clear" Sunday "that they
stand for democracy, freedom, and rule of law" and calls President
Nicolas Maduro a "bad leader who dreams of becoming a dictator."
The White House is calling on Venezuelan authorities to cancel plans to
form an assembly to rewrite the constitution and instead hold what it
calls "free and fair elections."
White House press secretary Sean Spicer says the U.S. congratulates the
Venezuelan people "for the huge turnout in the referendum" sponsored by
the opposition to reject President Nicolas Maduro's planned
constitutional revamp. He's praising "unmistakable statement that they
made and delivered to their government."
Spicer says the Trump administration condemns the "violence inflicted by
government thugs against innocent voters and efforts by the government
to erode democracy in Venezuela."
The Venezuelan opposition says more than 7 million people participated
in Sunday's referendum.
The Brazilian government says an opposition-organized referendum in
Venezuela is "unequivocal proof" that the people there want to see the
restoration of the democratic rule of law.
A statement Monday from Brazil's Foreign Ministry calls on Venezuelan
authorities to cancel plans to form an assembly to rewrite the
constitution, saying its rules violate popular sovereignty.
The Venezuelan opposition says 7,186,170 people participated in Sunday's
referendum to reject President Nicolas Maduro's plans for the July 30
election of an assembly.
Brazil's statement urges quick restoration of the powers of the congress
and the release of all political prisoners.
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox says he welcomes the decision by
Venezuela's socialist government to bar him from the country.
In his words: "I am very honored at this recognition from this
Venezuela's Foreign Minister Samuel Moncada said on Twitter that he is
declaring Fox persona non grata for conspiring to promote violence
foreign intervention. Moncada offered no evidence to support his
Fox was in Venezuela Saturday with other Latin American former
presidents to witness an opposition referendum against the government's
plan to rewrite the country's constitution. Fox told The Associated
Press Monday the trip was aimed at guaranteeing the transparency of the
Fox said he left Venezuela as planned Monday and hadn't been personally
notified of any action by the Venezuelan government. Fox said he would
continue to work for a democratic transition in the South American country.
Venezuelan opposition leaders are calling for a 24-hour national strike
starting Thursday to protest government plans to rewrite the
constitution and consolidate political power.
The opposition-controlled National Assembly also says it will name new
members of the country's supreme court, a move certain to be blocked by
President Nicolas Maduro's administration. The court is controlled by
loyalists of Maduro's ruling socialist party.
The opposition is calling on the government to call off the July 30
election of members of a constitutional assembly that would remake the
country's political system.
Venezuelan opposition leaders are calling on supporters to escalate
street protests after more than 7 million people rejected a government
plan to rewrite the constitution and consolidate its power.
The opposition said 7,186,170 Venezuelans participated in a symbolic
referendum rejecting President Nicolas Maduro's plans for the July 30
election of an assembly that would remake the political system.
A coalition of some 20 opposition parties planned to formally call
Monday for the launch of what it called the "zero hour" campaign of
civil disobedience in the two weeks leading to the government vote. More
than 100 days of opposition protests have left at least 93 people dead
and 1,500 wounded.
National Assembly President Julio Borges told local radio station that
the opposition has to "escalate and deepen this street movement."