CARACAS, Venezuela – The United States uses the territories of some Caribbean countries to plan its military operations against the Venezuelan government, denounced the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry.
“The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela expresses its concern at the strong signs that the United States is using the territories of some Caribbean countries as platforms for the planning and organization of illegal and terrorist operations,” the statement said.
Caracas has warned the governments of Dominica, Puerto Rico and other Caribbean island countries about “unconcerned use of their territories to launch these damaging acts of force.”
The note indicates that these operations are part of the US strategy “to bring about the overthrow of the legitimate government and the imposition of a puppet government through a direct intervention scheme in Venezuela.”
“This alert is being issued with the utmost sense of responsibility and solidarity, hoping that it will serve to activate in the peoples of these countries the dignified response that the region expects from them, trust in the importance that the peoples of these countries give to the values of democracy, self-determination and non-intervention,” underlined the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry.
The Venezuelan Ministry of Foreign Affairs recalled that at the end of January 2014, during the second Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States in Havana, Latin America and the Caribbean were proclaimed as a zone of peace.
The political crisis in Venezuela worsened in late January after the country’s opposition leader, Juan Guaidó, declared himself interim president, considering Maduro’s re-election last year as illegitimate.
Guaidó was recognized by the United States, followed by several countries in Europe and Latin America, among them Brazil. Russia, China, Mexico, Turkey and Uruguay are among those who have expressed their support for Maduro as the country’s legitimately elected president.
Meanwhile, the Venezuelan government decided on Tuesday that it will suspend shipping from all ports until Sunday after threats from criminal groups to carry out acts of violence, a military source said.
“In accordance with the instructions of the Strategic Region of the Integral Defense Capital, we have decided to suspend the shipment of vessels from all ports in the period from Tuesday, February 19, 2019 at 18:00 (22:00 GMT), through to Sunday February 24 at 8:00 am,” said a military document sent to Russian state media.
The document cites intelligence that “Structured Organized Crime Groups (GEDI) and groups that generate violence (GGV) plan to carry out actions that could result in assaults, collisions, intersections, robberies, etc., with unfortunate consequences and loss of life.”
On Tuesday, the Venezuelan government closed the maritime and air borders with the Caribbean islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao.