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Syria reiterates support for Maduro, rejects US interference in Venezuela

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Syria's UN Ambassador Bashar al-Jaafari speaks during a Security Council emergency meeting on April 13, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by AFP)

Syria's UN Ambassador Bashar al-Jaafari has reiterated his country’s support for Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro, condemning US interference in the affairs of the Latin American country.

“Syria realizes the conspiracy hatched against Venezuela and it understands what is taking place in it and the goals of its enemies who want to steal its resources and to change its strategic stances,” Jaafari said at an emergency meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Coordinating Bureau.

He reaffirmed Syria’s support for Maduro’s government and expressed his country’s solidarity with the leadership and people of Venezuela.

Jaafari also called on NAM member states to adopt a unified stance in support of the legitimate government in Venezuela.

Venezuela has been in political turmoil over the past weeks, with the opposition blaming Maduro for an ailing economy, hyperinflation, power cuts, and shortages of basic items, urging him to resign.

The political crisis deepened in the South American country on January 23, when opposition figure Juan Guaido, a lawmaker who leads the defunct National Assembly, proclaimed himself the “interim president” of the country. US President Donald Trump was quick to officially recognize him as such, announcing sanctions on Venezuela’s oil exports, the country’s main source of revenue.

Syria's UN Ambassador rejected the US interference in the internal affairs of Venezuela, stressing that dialogue was the only way to find a solution to crisis.

Relations between the US and Venezuela were already fraught before Trump's administration became one of the first to back Guaido as interim leader.

Besides the US, other major Western powers such as the UK, France, Spain and Germany have recognized Guaido as “interim president.”

Russia, China, Iran and Turkey are the countries that have thrown their support behind Maduro.

Maduro, who has been in power since 2013, was re-elected to a second term in May, in a disputed vote, which faced irregularities claims as well as an opposition boycott.

His government blames the economic crisis on the opposition and the US sanctions. The opposition says Maduro’s mismanagement is to blame.

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