US wants to make Venezuela another Syria or Libya: ambassador

TEHRAN, Feb. 17 (MNA) – Venezuelan Ambassador to Tehran Carlos Antonio Alcala Cordones says the US is seeking to create a situation similar to Syria and Libya in his country.

In an interview with the Tehran Times and Mehr news agency on Wednesday in his office, the ambassador said that the US plots against the Maduro government are intended to find access to Venezuela’s abundant natural resources.

Here is an excerpt of the interview:

Opposition leader Juan Guaido questioned legitimacy of President Maduro’s government on January 30 and took the people to streets that caused the current developments in Venezuela. What is your analysis of the crisis and the US role in it?

Guaido was an MP, however, Amazonas State and three of the MPs cheated in parliamentary elections in 2016 and the National Assembly of Venezuela was dissolved. So, this parliament has not been valid since 2016 and it is obvious that Guaido has no legal credibility in the parliament. 

As you know, developments in Venezuela were guided by US President Donald Trump, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Vice President Mike Pence and National Security Advisor John Bolton. They plotted chaos and violence and coup on January 23 and introduced Guaido as the president.

After the Bolivarian Revolution, we have been experiencing many attempts by the US to harm the revolution. The destructive efforts of the US against the Bolivarian Revolution have been continuing since 1998 and currently the pressure has been intensified by the Trump government.  

They [the US officials] seek to find control over Venezuela’s oil, gold and diamond resources. 

The current government has prevented them and the US is making efforts to be accompanied by the governments which are against Maduro and undermine legitimacy of the government to have access to the natural resources of Venezuela.

Documents have been presented to the UN Security Council proving the US actions against Venezuela. 

There is an initiative presented by Mexico and Uruguay and supported by Russia which proposes direct dialogue between the government and the opponents. What is the Venezuelan government’s position in this respect? In your opinion, what is the solution to the current crisis?

Based on the UN Charter, all the interfering actions against Venezuela are illegal. Certain organizations like the Mercosur and countries like Mexico, Uruguay, Cuba, Russia, China, Iran and Turkey have supported dialogue and peaceful ways within the framework of international law to solve the crisis. We also support such initiatives to achieve consensus in Venezuela. 

However, the Trump government has always tried to deceive the international community by saying that military action is unavoidable. It is upon them to decide whether they seek to treat with the Venezuelan people with peace or war.

Russia has decided to present a draft resolution to the UN Security Council to resolve the crisis in Venezuela. The US is also making efforts to topple Maduro’s government through early election by preparing a draft bill to the Security Council. Do you think Russia can prevent a possible U.S. military action by this draft?

We praise Russia’s actions at the UN for supporting the Venezuelan people. Russia supports our constitution and opposes military action against our country. It is not just Russia, China has also supported the Venezuelan government at the Security Council. 

Since 1998, Mr. [Hugo] Chavez and Maduro have encouraged dialogue between the government and the opposition. However, the opposition has always ignored results of the talks.

Guaido is not committed to any dialogue. In fact, it is the U.S. which decides for Guaido. A high ranking U.S. official announced that it is not the time to hold talks and we should take practical action against Venezuela. They seek to enact scenarios similar to Libya and Syria in Venezuela. 
 
We use all our force to stop their actions.

Given that the US actions and pressure violate the Organization of American States’ charter, what do you think about the organization’s role in this crisis?

Fidel Castro had once said that this organization is actually the U.S. colonial office. Secretary general of this organization does not take decisions independently. 

Recently, they held a meeting to issue a resolution against Maduro’s government to harm the Bolivarian Revolution. However, we have the people’s supports who elected Maduro in May 2018.

The governments which are against Venezuela are making efforts through the Lima Group and other organizations to interfere in our country’s affairs. However, countries such as Bolivia, Cuba, Nicaragua, Uruguay and certain other Caribbean countries did not accompany the US, being aware that such acts violate UN laws.

On the contrary, countries like Argentina, Chile, Columbia and Paraguay have remained silent and have not supported Venezuela. They are following the White House’s orders. Presidents of Brazil and Guyana are exerting pressure against Venezuela through the U.S. and the opponents.

What is the best way out of the crisis?

The best way is the one that the people chose and elected Nicolas Maduro. The way that countries recognized Maduro.

So, the only way that we propose is peace and diplomacy. We can solve all problems through peace and dialogue. The best way is to respect Venezuela’s independence and sovereignty and also respect the government which has been formed by the people’s votes.

Mr. Maduro and the foreign minister [Jorge Arreaza] are making any efforts to show the world the realities in Venezuela. 

We are ready to defend (the country) despite all the sanctions and pressures. We are ready to counter military attack by the US. 

It is obvious that no one wants war. War has consequences as it has had in the Middle East. We never seek war. We seek a dialogue which respect the people’s right to determine their destiny.

What is your opinion about Guaido’s remarks on resuming ties with the Zionist regime of Israel?

It is obvious that Guaido supports Israel, because Israel is an ally to the US and we would be surprised if he did not make such remarks. 

The US sees Guaido as a tool to reach Venezuela’s natural resources. The main objective of the US is access to our country’s resources.

How do you evaluate Iran’s position on developments in Venezuela?

First of all, I congratulate the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution. We have always see Iran’s advances as role model. I praise Iran’s supports for the Venezuelan government and people. 

Both Iran and Venezuela are victims of the US hostile actions and I congratulate the Iranian people who have resisted against such acts.

Interview by Negar Asadi & Javad Heirannia

MNA/TT

News Code 142623

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