Published: Thu, September 27, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Trashed by Trump, UN court is asked to investigate Venezuela

Trashed by Trump, UN court is asked to investigate Venezuela

The Trump administration imposed sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's wife and three other members of his inner circle.

Earlier in the day, Trump said he'd be willing to meet his longtime foe, but the White House said there were no immediate plans for such an encounter.

The Venezuelan leader dared U.S.

The U.S. president may deride it, but other countries are pinning hopes on the International Criminal Court to tackle one of today's deepest crises: Six nations took the unprecedented move Wednesday of asking the U.N. court to investigate Venezuela for possible crimes against humanity.

"The United States will continue to use the full weight of American economic and diplomatic power to help create the conditions for the restoration of democracy for the Venezuelan people", the Treasury statement added.

The Treasury Department also sanctioned First Lady and Former Attorney General Cilia Adela Flores de Maduro, Executive Vice President Delcy Eloina Rodriguez Gomez, Minister of Communication and Information Jorge Jesus Rodriguez Gomez, and Minister of Defense Vladimir Padrino Lopez.

Like Venezuela, both countries have had crushing sanctions imposed on them.

Peruvian Foreign Minister Nestor Popolizio said the presidents of Peru, Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Paraguay as well as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had signed a letter and sent it to the court based in The Hague.

Trump said Wednesday that all USA options are on the table to help end the political, economic and humanitarian chaos in Venezuela - even the "strong ones".

David Smilde, a Tulane University professor who has spent more than two decades living and working in Venezuela, said Tuesday's actions would seem to suggest the USA has given up trying to sow division within the government in the hopes it could force a democratic transition from within.

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Maduro has responded to the sanctions by stating that they are an honor coming from his foe Trump.

The United States issued a new round of sanctions against Venezuela on September 25, hours before President Donald Trump excoriated the socialist regime in his speech before the United Nations General Assembly.

"I just want to see Venezuela straighten out", Trump continued.

The Trump administration and many Latin American government, however, blame Venezuela's economic meltdown on reckless money printing, dysfunctional currency controls and poor management by Maduro's administration.

In particular, Maduro reiterated his claim that the US and Colombia were behind the August 4 explosion of a drone at a military parade in Caracas where he was speaking.

It came as somethng of a surprise that Maduro was at the General Assembly at all.

"Trump has said he's anxious about Venezuela and wants to help", Maduro said. "We're going to take care of Venezuela - what's happening in Venezuela is a disgrace".

Bensouda said she was looking at allegations Venezuelan state police "used excessive force to disperse and put down demonstrations, and arrested and detained thousands of actual or perceived members of the opposition, a number of whom would have been allegedly subjected to serious abuse and ill-treatment in detention". The president did not rule out military action by the United States, but declined to comment on specifics.

An estimated 2.3 million Venezuelans have fled into neighbouring countries in the last four years, threatening to upset regional stability.

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