Published: Thu, September 27, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Trump says chaos in Venezuela is unacceptable

Trump says chaos in Venezuela is unacceptable

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro arrived in NY for the United Nations Assembly on Wednesday, less than 24 hours after he warned the Trump Administration: "do not mess with Cilia, do not mess with the family".

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro walks with his wife Cilia Flores upon their arrival at the airport in Beijing, China, on September 13, 2018.

The sanctions would freeze any assets that a blacklisted person holds under US jurisdiction and ban any USA individuals or companies from making business transactions with them.

While speaking with reporters Wednesday, the president said he is willing to meet with the country's socialist leader - Nicolas Maduro - if he wants to discuss the issues.

Maduro then went on state television and thanked Trump for the sanctions, saying the sanctions were an honour. The six-country referral could broaden the scope of the ongoing preliminary probe to the more serious charges leveled at Venezuela on Wednesday and extend the time frame back to 2014.

"We ask the nations gathered here to join us in calling for the restoration of democracy in Venezuela", Trump said.

Maduro has been seeking a meeting with Trump for nearly two years and has watched with frustration as the US leader has talked with American adversaries like North Korea's Kim Jong Un and Russia's Vladimir Putin while shunning Venezuelan entreaties.

"I'm even willing to talk to President Trump, I think if President Trump and I speak, we could understand each other", he said in Caracas.

"I'm willing to meet with anybody anytime I can (to) save lives, help people", Trump said as he was pummeled by reporters' questions about whether the USA would ever intervene military to remove Maduro.

Vladimir Padrino Lopez, Venezuela's Defense Minister, one of three leaders inside President Nicola Maduro's leadership group that were included in sanctions imposed by the U.S.

"If you want to attack me, come at me directly". Venezuela has been the target of harsh criticism by Trump and his allies in recent months as conservatives have attempted to portray socialism as the cause of the country's hyperinflation and high level of poverty. They pointed to a human rights report accusing Venezuelan security forces of carrying out arbitrary arrests, murders, extrajudicial executions, torture, sexual abuse and rape on orders from Maduro's government.

"I'm willing to meet with anybody anytime I can [to] save lives, help people", Trump said as he was asked whether the United States would ever intervene military to remove Maduro.

Maduro is the president of Venezuela.

But his desire for some sort of reconciliation with the United States has increased as worldwide pressure has been building on his socialist government at a time of hyperinflation and widespread food and medicine shortages.

At the podium in the U.N. General Assembly where Trump had bashed him a day earlier, Maduro did not soften his tone or his message.

The Trump administration has, nonetheless, downplayed the possibility of a direct United States military intervention in Venezuela, despite concerns by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel that an "October surprise" may be in the works.

On Wednesday, presidents from several conservative Latin American governments are expected to meet in NY to sign a complaint with the International Criminal Court asking it to investigate Maduro on charges of crimes against humanity.

"It's a regime that, frankly, could be toppled very quickly by the military if the military decides to do that", said the US President in reply to a journalist.

The collapse of Venezuela's oil-based economy under the increasingly authoritarian Maduro has led to dire shortages of food and medicine.

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