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Venezuela denounces that its diplomatic headquarters in the US are occupied

Representatives of President of the Venezuelan Parliament Juan Guaido can be seen through the glass in the Venezuelan Consulate in New York, New York, USA, 18 March 2019 after it has been announced that they have taken of control of three of the country's diplomatic properties in the United States, one of them in New York City. EPA-EFE/ALBA VIGARAY

Representatives of President of the Venezuelan Parliament Juan Guaido can be seen through the glass in the Venezuelan Consulate in New York, New York, USA, 18 March 2019 after it has been announced that they have taken of control of three of the country’s diplomatic properties in the United States, one of them in New York City. EPA-EFE/ALBA VIGARAY

EFE

The Venezuelan government denounced on Monday that its diplomatic headquarters in the United States are being forcibly occupied and demanded that the government of President Donald Trump “immediately reverse” the situation.

Through a statement from the Foreign Ministry, Venezuela claimed “to the international community that its diplomatic headquarters in the United States are being forcibly occupied by people who have the public support of the US government and act as its representatives.”

In addition, Venezuela “demands that the US authorities comply with its legal obligations and take the necessary measures to immediately reverse this forcible occupation, in compliance with the provisions of (...) the Vienna Convention.”

Carlos Vecchio, representative in the US of the head of the Venezuelan Parliament, Juan Guaido, announced that he took control of the military attache of the Caribbean nation in Washington, as well as of another building and the consulate in New York.

According to Vecchio, these measures are intended to secure the assets of Venezuela in the US.

The Foreign Ministry also said in the statement that if the US government “persists in the breach of its international obligations” and does not protect these buildings, Venezuela will reserve the right to “corresponding legal and reciprocal decisions and actions” in its territory.

“The diplomatic offices of Venezuela in the United States can only be occupied by official representatives who represent the democratic and constitutional government of President Nicolas Maduro ,” the statement adds.

Venezuela has been going through a new phase of political crisis since January, after Nicolas Maduro was sworn in for a new 6-year term and, in response, Guaido proclaimed an interim government with him as president.

Guaido made this announcement on the grounds that Maduro “usurps” the presidency by having won elections that were branded as fraudulent and not recognized by the opposition and part of the international community.

Meanwhile, Democrats in Florida on Monday urged the state legislature to pressure the government of Donald Trump and the US Congress to grant Venezuelans the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and demanded measures that guarantee the delivery of humanitarian aid to Venezuela.

Gathered in the Capitol in Tallahassee, the Democrats and members of the Hispanic caucus of that party asked to support legislation presented by state representative Carlos Guillermo Smith on TPS, an immigration relief granted to countries affected by armed conflicts or natural disasters.

“It is hypocritical that the Trump government denounces the brutal repression and humanitarian crisis faced by the Venezuelan people, while deporting Venezuelans,” Senator Janet Cruz lamented during a press conference at the Capitol.


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