Humanitarian aid is blocked at the border after Maduro refuses to let the US packages into Venezuela… as people starve

Friday, February 8, 2019
By Paul Martin

Two semi-trailers loaded with emergency food and medicine are in Colombia
But President Nicolas Maduro has blocked entry across bridge into Venezuela
Comes a day after US admiral said soldiers are starving just like population
Opposition leader Juan Guaido has vowed to bring aid into the troubled nation

8 February 2019

Humanitarian aid for Venezuela has been blocked at the border by President Nicolas Maduro after he said the nation ‘is not a country of beggars’.

Two semi-trailers loaded with boxed emergency food and medicine rolled into the Colombian border city of Cucuta, which is just across the river from Venezuela, yesterday.

But the Venezuelan military has barricaded a bridge between the two nations with a tanker and two cargo trailers.

Opposition leader Juan Guaido, who called for assistance, has vowed to bring aid into the troubled nation.

The news comes just a day after a top US admiral claimed Venezuelan soldiers are starving.

Admiral Craig Faller, who is in charge of US forces in South America said ‘the rank and file are starving, just like their population’, and that he had seen Venezuelan soldiers who had lost as much as 30lbs in a year.

The focus of Venezuela’s political fight now hinges on whether Mr Maduro will allow the aid to enter the country, a move anticipated in coming days.

About a dozen human rights activists stood at the gated entrance to the Tienditas International Bridge on Colombia’s side, demanding Mr Maduro allow the emergency aid to cross into Venezuela.

They waved flags while Colombian police trucks carrying armed officers and other authorities drove by throughout the day.

Yesterday Mr Faller called the Venezuelan military a ‘degraded force,’ but one that ‘remains loyal to Maduro – and that makes it dangerous’.

Faller, who assumed command of US military’s Southern Command in November, said the US military was keeping a close eye on Venezuela and was prepared to protect American personnel and diplomatic facilities ‘if necessary’.

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