Wednesday, 18 September, 2019

U.S. withdrawing all remaining diplomatic personnel from Venezuela - State Department

US pulls remaining diplomats out of Venezuelan embassies as crisis worsens US pulling all staff out of embassy in Venezuala
Patty Aguilar | 12 March, 2019, 14:07

Most US staff serving in Venezuela's capital Caracas had already been moved in January.

Earlier, Pompeo blasted Russian Federation and Cuba for their continued support of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, accusing them of keeping his regime afloat despite the will of the country's people.

The US still withdrew dependents of embassy personnel as well as some of the staff, and the secretary of state said the remaining diplomats would be out of Venezuela by the end of the week. He denied U.S. responsibility for the blackout and stressed that the U.S. is "interested only in the welfare of the Venezuelan people".

"When there is no electricity, thank the marvels of modern Cuban-led engineering", he said. "When there's no food, thank the Cuban communist overlords".

Cuba's influence on the country is now so strong that many of Maduro's advisors and security officials may not be under his orders, Pompeo said.

Cuba's support comes from a shared ideology, while Russia has "its own reason" for destabilizing Venezuela through spreading disinformation through Russia Today and Sputnik, state-owned news organizations.

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While most USA staff stationed in Caracas had already been withdrawn in January following the US-backed opposition leader Juan Guaido's attempt to declare himself president, a select few remained in defiance of President Nicolas Maduro's order to American diplomats to leave the country.

"The United States will not stand idly by while foreign financial institutions facilitate illegitimate transactions that benefit Maduro and his cronies, and perpetuate the corruption that has devastated Venezuela", he said.

Maduro has long claimed the political turmoil in his country has been caused by an American-backed coup.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the decision as Venezuela struggles to restore electricity following four days of blackouts around the country and a deepening political crisis. "And Rosneft's CEO, Igor Sechin, continues to throw a lifeline to the regime", Pompeo said.

"The United States' imperialist government ordered this attack", Maduro said. There is no ambiguity here about the truth.

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