Tensions beTween The U.S. and Venezuela have mounted following Maduro’s victory in presidential elections.
UNITED STATES.- President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday said he was expelling the top U.S. diplomat in Venezuela and his deputy for allegedly conspiring against his government and trying to sabotage the country’s recent presidential election.
“The empire doesn’t dominate us here,” Maduro said in a televised address, giving charge d’affaires Todd Robinson and his deputy Brian Naranjo 48 hours to leave the country.“We’ve had enough of your conspiring.” Maduro’s victory in presidential elections on Sunday, a vote the White House has braneda“sham.”
Maduro said in his speech that Robinson and Naranjo, whom he referred to as the head of the CIA in Venezuela, both personally pressured several anti-government presidential aspirants not to compete in the race. Most opposition parties decided to boycott after officials blocked their most popular leaders from competing.
Maduro also accused the Trump administration, which slapped new sanctions on his government Monday, of seeking to escalate“aggressions” against the Venezuelan people.
“The dominant and decisive rea- son why the opposition progressively withdrew from the elections was the decision by the extremist U.S. government to not validate or legitimize a presidential election that they knew fully was going to be won in any scenario by the candidate of Nicolas Maduro,” the pre- sident said.