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The Latest: Pompeo Demands Maduro Not Block Venezuela Aid

The Latest: Pompeo Demands Maduro Not Block Venezuela Aid

Wednesday, 06 February 2019 03:37 PM

CUCUTA, Colombia (AP) — The Latest on Venezuela's political crisis (all times local):

2:40 p.m.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is demanding that Venezuela's embattled President Nicolas Maduro stop trying to block humanitarian assistance from entering the country.

Pompeo tweeted Wednesday that the United States and other countries are sending emergency food and medicine to help desperate Venezuelans.

Tensions are high for a third week since opposition lawmaker Juan Guaido announced he rightly assumed the presidency, vowing to oust Maduro and restore Venezuela's democracy.

The Venezuelan military has barricaded a border bridge with Colombia in an apparent attempt to block the emergency food and medicine.

Pompeo says Venezuela's military has barricaded the bridge, blocking aid under orders from Maduro.

He says the "Maduro regime must LET THE AID REACH THE STARVING PEOPLE" of Venezuela.

1:30 p.m.

The Venezuelan military has barricaded a bridge at a key border crossing, Colombian officials said Wednesday, in an apparent bid to block humanitarian aid from entering the country.

The Tienditas International Bridge was blocked a day prior by the Venezuelan National Guard with a giant orange tanker, two large blue containers and makeshift fencing near the border town of Cucuta in Colombia.

The bridge is at the same site where officials plan to store humanitarian aid that opposition leader Juan Guaido is vowing to deliver to Venezuela. The Trump administration has pledged $20 million in aid and Canada has promised another $53 million.

The aid squabble is now the latest front in the battle between Guaido and President Nicolas Maduro, who is vowing not to let the supplies enter the country. Maduro argues Venezuela isn't a nation of "beggars" and has long rejected receiving humanitarian assistance, equating it to a foreign intervention.

Looking up at the giant containers blocking the bridge Wednesday, aid worker Alba Pereira shook her head and dismissed the barricade as another government ploy. She said that humanitarian volunteers would find a way to get the aid into the country regardless.

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The Latest on Venezuela's political crisis (all times local):2:40 p.m.U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is demanding that Venezuela's embattled President Nicolas Maduro stop trying to block humanitarian assistance from entering the country.Pompeo tweeted Wednesday that...
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