Published: Sat, February 09, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Volunteers ready USA aid for Venezuela, Maduro vows to block it

Volunteers ready USA aid for Venezuela, Maduro vows to block it

Maduro's troops continue to block aid from the United States on the border with Colombia, with Maduro accusing President Donald Trump of treating his people like 'beggars'.

"Venezuela will not allow the show of. humanitarian aid because we do not beg from anyone", Maduro told reporters. He also said that if they really want to help, the economic sanctions with which they suffocate the Bolivarian Government in its efforts to stabilize the social rights of the population must cease.

Elliott Abrams, the Trump administration's special envoy to Venezuela, declined to provide additional details or say how many officials would be affected by the decision, but did say the time for dialogue with the embattled leader "has long passed".

"It's not military intervention - it's global humanitarian intervention", Medina added, noting that his grandfather was president of Venezuela during World War II and opposed the Nazis.

Guaido, 35, is trying to bring in food and medicines from the U.S. but the supplies are stuck in warehouses in Colombia because the Venezuelan military has blocked their entry.

Consultants Eurasia Group said Thursday that time was running out for Maduro as his traditional allies Russian Federation and China are "unlikely to lend (him) meaningful support", reinforcing its view that the socialist leader "will be unable to sustain his regime".

Colombia has borne the brunt of the exodus of Venezuelans fleeing malnutrition and political turmoil in their once-prosperous nation, with about 800,000 flooding over the border and settling in Colombia.

The 35-year-old argues Maduro was re-elected last year in a sham vote and the country must hold new presidential elections. "The end of the usurpation will be the end of hunger", he added, as he called for Venezuelans to reject the Maduro government. Guaido maintains that Maduro's second term as president is illegitimate, citing the May 2018 election that faced widespread global condemnation.

Britain, Germany, France and Spain and more than a dozen other European Union member states recognised Mr Guaido in a coordinated action on Monday, following the expiration of an ultimatum they gave for Mr Maduro to hold a new presidential election.

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"And there are a number of countries who are willing to accept him".

He recalled how in 2016, a large group of Venezuelan women dressed in white and intent on crossing the closed border with Colombia made their way through a line of national guardsmen in order to buy food on the other side.

He invoked a constitutional provision to declare himself president ad interim on January 23, promising to restore the "liberty and democracy" of Venezuela.

Maduro has criticized Trump for threatening the use of military force in his country and said Venezuelans would resist USA aggression.

The bridge is at the same site where officials plan to store humanitarian aid that Guaido is vowing to deliver to Venezuela.

The goods, including packaged corn flour, lentils and pasta, arrived Thursday in what the opposition is hoping will be the first of many shipments of humanitarian aid from countries around the world. The Trump administration has pledged $20 million in aid and Canada has promised another $53 million.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas also said Germany had earmarked €5 million ($5.72 million) worth of assistance for Venezuela.

However military intervention opponents point out the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela does not pose a direct security threat to the United States.

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