Trump Takes Aim at Venezuela in UN Speech

FEDERICO PARRA JIM WATSON  AFP

FEDERICO PARRA JIM WATSON AFP

Trump threatened to build upon sweeping economic sanctions that the US slapped on Venezuela last month if Maduro "persists on a path to impose authoritarian rule".

"The Venezuelan people are starving".

United States President Donald Trump addressed the crisis in Venezuela this Monday, September 18 during a meeting at the United Nations.

Santos met with Trump and other Latin American leaders at a special dinner on the fringes of the U.N General assembly in NY to discuss what the USA leader described as a "completely unacceptable" situation in Venezuela under Nicolas Maduro's leadership.

Washington has already slapped sanctions on the crisis-stricken country and Trump warned on 11 August that the USA was mulling a range of options against Venezuela, "including a possible military option if necessary".

Trump threatened to build upon sweeping economic sanctions that the USA already slapped on Venezuela last month.

In attendance during the talk were Brazilian President Michel Temer, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, President of Panama Juan Carlos Varela, and Vice President of Argentina Gabriela Michetti.

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"His corrupt regime destroyed a thriving nation by imposing a failed ideology that has produced poverty and despair everywhere it has been tried", he said.

Their democratic institutions are being destroyed, ' Trump said.

Venezuela has been rocked by months of economic chaos and deadly protests as President Nicolas Maduro consolidates control, including through a new Constituent Assembly that wrests power from the opposition-dominated legislature. "The human rights situation in Venezuela has regrettably deteriorated continuously", Temer said.

"I ask every country represented here today to be prepared to do more to address this very real crisis", Trump said.

Addressing the UN General Assembly Temer noted that his country has taken in thousands of Venezuelans.

However, Trump only said that the U.S.is "prepared to take further action" against Venezuela.

"We have told Trump that military intervention is not on the agenda for any Latin American country", Santos told Bloomberg.

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