Pompeo Threatens Military Intervention After Maduro Declares Victory Over ‘Attempted Coup’
Update (7:16 am ET): Here we go again…
Now that the monthslong simmering rebellion against Maduro has exploded into a full-fledged uprising – one that’s in danger of being brutally suppressed by the Maduro regime – it’s time for the US to revive its threats of military intervention with the added subtext of ‘this time, we mean it’.
After footage from yesterday’s riots showed regime tanks brutally crushing opposition supporters, Mike Pompeo appeared on Fox Business this morning and said that the US hasn’t ruled out military intervention.
- U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE POMPEO SAYS MILITARY ACTION IN VENEZUELA IS POSSIBLE ‘IF THAT’S WHAT’S REQUIRED’, WOULD PREFER PEACEFUL TRANSITION -FOX BUSINESS INTERVIEW
His comments come as supporters of the regime and opposition prepare to take to the streets for another wave of massive demonstrations on Wednesday.
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Venezuelan opposition leader and self-proclaimed president Juan Guaido has called for a second day of street protests on Wednesday, but after the Venezuelan government successfully beat back the Guaido-led “popular uprising” – as the vast majority of Venezuela’s military remained loyal to Nicolas Maduro – it looks like the Russia- and China-backed socialist regime has resisted this latest challenge to its rule.
The coup attempt was hardly bloodless – there were horrifying incidences of extreme violence – but for all the jawboning from President Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and NSA John Bolton, it appears Guaido’s most prolific attempt yet to force Maduro from power was a spectacular failure. Some members of the military defected, but Maduro by and large retained control over the military and other levers of power. Presenting a surprising lack of confidence in Guaido, opposition supporters celebrated the release of Leopoldo Lopez from house arrest, the former opposition leader immediately sought refuge in the Chilean embassy.
Late on Tuesday, Maduro took to twitter to thank the supporters of his regime who took to the streets to help suppress the rebellion, and the leaders who stood up for the Bolivarian revolution.
Flanked by military leaders, Maduro delivered a speech where he demanded that all opposition supporters who participated in the day’s violent skirmishes must be identified and arrested, and he bragged that the military base at La Carlota resisted a takeover attempt.
In honor of May Day, widely celebrated as International Workers Day, Maduro called for supporters to take to the streets for a ‘millions-strong march’.
“Tomorrow, the first of May, we will have a large, millions-strong march of the working class,” Maduro said in a Tuesday “We have been confronting different types of aggression and attempted coups never before seen in our history.”
Forming an unusual alliance, it appears CNN has joined the Trump administration in spreading disinformation about the events in Venezuela to try and destabilize the regime.
Still, Guaido hasn’t given up yet, calling for his “Operation Liberty” to continue on Wednesday, he asked opposition supporters to take to the streets for the ‘largest march in history’ (though, after seeing footage of opposition supporters being crushed by a tank on Tuesday, we imagine that some might have second thoughts).
Meanwhile, Russia’s foreign ministry has said Pompeo’s claim that Moscow had convinced Maduro to resist the coup and cling to power was “fake news”.
Pompeo said Tuesday that Maduro had intended to step down, but Russia had convinced him to stay. “Washington tried its best to demoralise the Venezuelan army and now [has] used fakes as a part of an information war,” Moscow spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told CNN on Wednesday.
As Venezuelans prepare for a second day of unrest, the number of dead and wounded in Tuesday’s clashes hasn’t yet been reported.
Live Updates: Venezuelan Govt Says Guaido Coup Failed, Lopez Hides in Chile’s Embassy
The Venezuelan opposition lawmaker has once again called on the military to overthrow the legitimate government of President Nicolas Maduro.
Juan Guaido, the opposition lawmaker who illegally proclaimed himself “interim president” of Venezuela Tuesday morning made a call on social media asking the military and people to begin an uprising against the legitimate government of President Nicolas Maduro.
Senior government officials have rejected the attempted coup and called on the country’s population to do the same and march towards the Miraflores presidential palace to protect the country from the far-right, U.S.-backed coup.
Thousands of citizens have accepted the call and marched Tuesday to the palace to attend a rally led by the head of the National Consistent Assembly Diosdado.
UPDATE 8:00 pm (local time)
Chile’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Roberto Ampuero, tweeted that opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez and his family are now moving to the Spanish Embassy.
UPDATE 7:00 pm (local time)
Caricom leadership has issued a statement appealing “for calm and peace,” while reiterating a pledge that CARICOM will continue to make every effort to help bring a peaceful resolution to Venezuela’s political situation.
Venezuela’s Foreign Affairs Minister Jorge Arreaza has categorically called U.S. allegations regarding President Maduro and high ranking officials as “fake news.”
UPDATE 5:37 pm (local time)
The National Liberation Farabundo Marti Front (FMLN) from El Salvador has released a statement condemning emphatically the coup attempt and reject all attempts to gain power through violence.
“We pronounce ourselves in defense to the respect of sovereignty and self-determination of the Latin American people and the world in its social and revolutionary transformation projects.”
UPDATE: 5:20 pm (local time)
President Donald Trump threatens Cuba with a “full embargo” if they do not stop their support for Venezuela.
A teleSUR correspondent in Brazil has received confirmation from the Foreign Ministry of Brazil that 25 soldiers that have asked for protection in the Brazilian embassy in Caracas.
UPDATE: 4:04 pm
Russia’s Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Maria Zakharova announced that “if Washington does not stop interfering in the affairs of Venezuela, it will lead to the collapse of the situation.”
She commented also that some Washington politicians cannot appreciate how destructive that path can be “which is strange because everyone else already sees it”.
Zakharova made these statements after U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton requested a “regime change” in Venezuela.
UPDATE: 3:48 pm
During a press conference from New York, the Venezuelan ambassador to the United Nations Samuel Moncada said that Tuesday’s “coup attempt seeks to promote a puppet government, but failed because most of our people want to live in peace and with the right to self-determination.”
The Venezuelan official also called on the international community to reject the far-right violent attempt, for it “violates every U.N Charter and undermines peace.”
The diplomat pointed out that the U.S. government has openly admitted that it has participated in today’s new conspiracy act and commented that “it’s a psychopathic, warlike elite that is using all media with a bombard of fake news.”
Regarding Venezuela opposition politician Leopoldo Lopez asylum request at the Chilean embassy, Moncada said that “those gentlemen have been defeated, but that defeat will have consequences in many parts of that fictitious government.”
UPDATE: 3:11 pm
Chile’s Foreign Affairs Minister Roberto Ampuero confirmed that Venezuelan opposition politician Leopoldo Lopez and his family requested asylum at the Chilean embassy in Caracas.
“Lilian Tintori and her daughter entered as guests of our diplomatic mission in Caracas. A few minutes ago her spouse, Leopoldo Lopez, joined his family in that place. Chile reaffirms commitment with Venezuelan democrats,” Minister Ampuero tweeted.
UPDATE: 3:30 pm
Jill Stein, a medical doctor and former Green Party candidate in the U.S. presidential elections in 2012 and 2016, rejected the Trump administration’s attempt to destabilize Venezuela in order to grab its oil resources.
UPDATE: 3:11 pm
The Communist Party of Kenya (CPK) condemned in the strongest terms the U.S.-backed coup attempt and called to “abash imperialism”.
“The CPK congratulates the Venezuelan military and the Venezuelan masses for crushing the U.S backed coup. We call upon the Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and the Venezuelan Government to move with speed, arrest the coup plotters and subject them to the Venezuelan criminal justice system. Abash US Imperialism abash!”
UPDATE: 3:07 pm
The Socialist Forum of Ghana (SFG) issued a statement rejecting the coup attempt and standing with the Venezuelan constitutional government.
“The SFG unreservedly condemns the attempted coup in Venezuela instigated by the U.S and other reactionary centers. We salute the revolutionary armed forces of Venezuela for their dignity and commitment to the constitutional order. The SFG expresses its full solidarity with the Government and people of Venezuela resisting imperialist aggression.”
UPDATE: 2:02 pm
Facing a new failed coup attempt in Venezuela, the U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton tried again to threaten and bribe Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino, Presidential Guard commander Ivan Hernandez, and Supreme Justice president Maikel Moreno by promising them special favors in exchange for supporting the opposition politician Guaido.
“Your time is up. This is your last chance. Accept Interim President Guaido’s amnesty, protect the Constitution, and remove Maduro, and we will take you off our sanctions list. Stay with Maduro, and go down with the ship,” said Bolton.
UPDATE: 2:35 pm
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned the attempted coup led by Venezuelan opposition politicians Juan Guaido and Leopoldo Lopez.
“Those who make efforts to appoint a colonial governor in Venezuela should know that you can only decide how to govern a country through democratic elections,” said Erdogan, referring to the countries which have expressed their support for the Venezuelan opposition.
UPDATE: 2:30 pm
U.S. President Donald Trump broke his silence to tacitly support the coup attempt which Guaido initiated Tuesday morning in Venezuela.
“I am monitoring the situation in Venezuela very closely. The United States stands with the People of Venezuela and their Freedom!”
UPDATE: 2:25 pm
Mexico’s Communist Party spoke in favor of the self-determination of the Venezuelan people who are currently resisting a new U.S.-backed attack.
“Solidarity with the Venezuelan people in the face of this U.S. Trump administration-promoted coup d’etat. They are the ones who have to decide their destiny, without imperialist interference or intervention.”
UPDATE: 2:17 am
Chile’s Communist Party expressed its solidarity with the Venezuelan people and rejected the U.S.-backed coup attempt.
“There is no place to ‘half-way measures’ anymore: NO to the coup d’etat in Venezuela. We condemn and reject the Venezuelan right-wing triggered violence, which is headed by Guaido, supported by the Lima Group and the United States. Once again, they will not pass!”
UPDATE: 2:10 pm
Jean-Luc Melenchon, a French socialist politician and congressman, tweeted that “an ultra tiny, minority military quadroon is attempting, along with the self-proclaimed president Guaido -the puppet- a coup in Venezuela. The Colombian right-wing calls in vain for the secession of the [Bolivarian] Army. Does [French President] Macron approve the military coup attempt?
UPDATE: 1:52 pm
“I was in La Carlota [Air Base] when we heard shots coming from the distributor Altamira taken by a group of military traitors and this was just the moment when they fire. Watch closely, even the civilians who were there they also take out their weapons.”
“And this is how we lived the moment inside La Carlota when they [the opposition members] shot from the Altamira highway distributor. We heard the blast of shots and then silence.”
UPDATE: 1:46 pm
The State of Palestine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates condemned the coup attempt against Venezuelan constitutional President Nicolas Maduro.
“The Ministry expresses its full solidarity with the Venezuelan brave people which rejects foreign hegemony and domination … On behalf of the Palestinian State and its people, the Ministry also declares its solidarity with the elected and legitimate leadership of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, which is represented by President Nicolas Maduro.”
The Palestinian Authority also disapproved any form of foreign intervention in Venezuela, either through military actions or economic sanctions. The Ministry expressed its position in favor of dialogue as a way to resolve any conflict among Venezuelan political forces.
UPDATE: 1:40 pm
Venezuela’s Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino denounced that a Bolivarian army’s colonel was bullet wounded on the Francisco Fajardo highway, where Guaido-led opposition forces have been demonstrating in Caracas.
“I denounce violent aggression against Col. Yerzon Jimenez Baez, the CZGNB-43 Operations chief, who was shot in his neck on the Francisco Fajardo highway. He is entering the operating room right now. I hold the political opposition leadership responsible.”
UPDATE: 1:20 pm
Soldiers reveal to teleSUR reporters about how they were tricked into joining the attempted coup by Juan Guaido and his right-wing allies in the country.
Barbados Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration Secretary General, David Denny, rejected Tuesday the right-wing coup attempt against Venezuela’s constitutional government and stressed that this violent action is backed by the U.S. government and its regional allies.
“Our movement calls on the Caribbean governments, trade union leader, youth leaders and women organisations leaders to condemn Juan Guaido’s coup attempt, which is supported by the U.S., against the Venezuelan peaceful government and people… Long live the Bolivarian people’s revolution”, Denny said.
UPDATE: 12:52 pm
According to the Russian news agency Tass, President Vladimir Putin met the National Security Council to discuss Tuesday’s situation in Venezuela.
“The meeting’s participants paid much attention to the situation in Venezuela in light of the news about an attempted coup,” Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov noted.
“We stand on principles supporting political and civilized ways to resolve domestic differences among Venezuelan citizens. We call on all international community members, including [Venezuela’s] closest neighbors, to reaffirm their adherence to the UN Charter and the international law norms and principles, and to support the return of Venezuela to a stable and progressive development path through the dialogue of all the country’s responsible political forces.”
UPDATE: 12:40 pm
The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres asked for “maximum restraint” in Venezuela to avoid violence, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told international media.
“The Secretary-General urges all sides to exercise maximum restraint and he appeals to all stakeholders to avoid any violence and take immediate steps to restore calm,” Dujarric said and added that Guterres was available to mediate if required.
UPDATE: 12:30 pm
Uruguay’s Communist Party expressed its solidarity with President Nicolas Maduro and requested that the Montevideo Mechanism countries -which include Uruguay, Bolivia and Mexico- act immediately to prevent any further attack to Venezuela.
“In several countries, there have been tests of coup attempts. Once the alignment of the forces is verified, those tests have materialized. Therefore, we call on all democratic and peace supporting forces… to remain alert and firm in solidarity.”
UPDATE: 12:21 pm
The Russian Foreign Ministry, which issued Tuesday a press released commenting on Venezuela’s situation, stated that the Guaido-led opposition is provoking public disorder.
“Venezuela’s radical opposition has once again turned to power methods of confrontation. Instead of a peaceful settlement of political contradictions, the course was taken to incite conflict,” the text says, as reported by RT.
Russian diplomats called on protesters to avoid unrest and bloodshed, for “any action should be taken exclusively within the framework of the law.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry also asked mainstream media not to spread “fake news” or become “political forces’ obedient tools.”
UPDATE: 12:00 pm
Venezuela’s Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino gave a press conference to narrate how today’s attempted coup in Venezuela had occurred.
“This is a cowardly, terrorist act and an attempted coup d’état of a very small magnitude,” he said and stressed that Guaido’s far-right forces “have tricked a group of men with hijacked vehicles of our national guard to commit a terrorist act.”
Minister Padrino also mentioned that the Bolivarian militia reacted immediately to the coup attempt and “their commanders put themselves at the head of their troops to reject a cowardly act.”
UPDATE: 11:50 am
Zambia’s Socialist Party condemned the coup attempt against the Bolivarian Revolution and reaffirmed its support to President Maduro’s redistributive policies.
“Having failed over the years to kill the leadership and destroy the gains of the Bolivarian Revolution, the U.S. is now desperately turning to rogues in the army to do their dirty job. As it is to be expected, the greatest majority of the troops and all commanders are loyal to the people, the Constitution and their homeland. Commandant Nicolas Maduro is the undisputed constitutional President of Venezuela.”
The African party also pointed out the real reasons behind the so-called “Operation Liberty”, namely, the “imperial” desire to plunder Venezuelan natural resources.
“The U.S. and European imperialist powers, plus their representatives in Venezuela, have plundered that country for centuries. The Bolivarian Revolution reversed that plunder and redistributed the wealth to its people. This is against the logic of capitalist plunder. This is the reason why today a coup is underway – to deny the Venezuelan masses their regained sovereignty and dignity.”
UPDATE: 11: 30 am
During an interview with RT, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said that “the U.S. has been behind all the coup attempts in Venezuela since 2001.” This time, however, the U.S. is not “behind” but rather “in front of” the attempted coup.
“It has been demonstrated that the craft of this coup is from the U.S. and that it is they who are financing and promoting the coup”, he said and further explained, speaking more accurately, that the new coup attempt began on Jan. 23, when the opposition congressman Juan Guaido illegally self-proclaimed Venezuela’s “interim president” and the U.S. government supported such claim.
UPDATE: 11:23 am
Mexico’s Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrad presented through twitter his country’s stance regarding the coup d’etat which opposition Juan Guaido tried to carry out this Tuesday morning.
“The Mexican government is following closely the Venezuelan ongoing situation and is concerned about a possible escalation of violence. Mexico reiterates its commitment to finding a peaceful solution to the crisis… Through the Foreign Affairs Ministry, consultations are being held with the other sixteen Montevideo Mechanism countries in order to find a common route.”
UPDATE 11:20 am
teleSUR’s correspondents spoke to the Chavistas gathering at the Miraflores palace in support of President Maduro and in rejection of the coup.
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VIDEO: Guaido’s coup is a ‘farce’ – Daniel McAdams
Venezuela’s opposition leader and US-back presidential aspirant Juan Guaido has called for a military uprising in his latest effort to topple President Nicolas Maduro. Clashes have broken out between police and protesters in Caracas. Meanwhile police in Washington, DC have set up barricades between the pro-Maduro activists occupying Venezuela’s embassy and more recent arrivals protesting in favor of Guaido. Rachel Blevins reports. Daniel McAdams of the Ron Paul Institute joins News.Views.Hughes to weigh in.