The US has rejected a draft statement condemning terrorism and voicing support for Venezuela’s sovereignty at the UN Security Council. The Russian-sponsored draft did not assign blame for the botched incursion.
The short statement was watered down to sound ‘politically neutral’ in hopes it would not face any opposition from the UNSC members, the Russian mission to the United Nations said.
However, despite the text not even mentioning the recent boat incursion that led to the capture of two former US Green Berets, Washington did not give the document any chance, ‘killing’ it ‘within 9 minutes’ from the start of the voting process, according to Russia’s first deputy envoy to the organization, Dmitry Polyanskiy.
The draft calls on UNSC member-states to ‘reject the use or threat of use of force, terrorism in all of its forms and manifestations’ as well as ‘the use of mercenaries.’
The current crisis, which has seen the Latin American nation plunging into economic and political chaos – exacerbated by the crippling sanctions and thinly-veiled regime change threats from Washington – should be resolved “through dialogue by Venezuelans, without interference, through peaceful and political means,” the draft said.
Now, by blocking the draft, the US has shown its true colours, Polyanskiy implied in his tweet.
While the Russian proposal was reserved in its wording, the American UN envoy, Kelly Craft, minced no words countering it. According to Craft, it is Russia and Cuba who infringe on Venezuelan sovereignty, because they ‘routinely send military officers and mercenaries’ against the will of none other than Juan Guaido, the US-funded, self-proclaimed interim leader of the troubled country.
She also did not hesitate to shift the blame to Venezuela while disavowing any US involvement in the failed coup attempt, hinting that the Venezuelan government could have played a role ‘in creating this supposed crisis.’
Caracas maintains that the raid’s ultimate goal was to oust President Nicolas Maduro, with the detained Americans telling interrogators that the head of a Florida-based private military firm was in charge of the failed operation.
One of the captives, Luke Denman, explained on an interrogation tape that he was tasked with training Venezuelan émigrés in neighbouring Colombia and after they had ‘secured their targets,’ with seizing an airfield to ‘put Maduro on a plane.’ Denman would then stay at the airfield to receive “incoming humanitarian aid” and await further instructions.
The telling confession coincided with the latest statement by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who announced the US will pump $200 million in ‘additional assistance’ meant to support Venezuelans fleeing their country ‘due to the tyranny of the former Maduro regime.’