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Lavrov denounces US’ statement about Russia’s role in situation in Venezuela as wrong

Russia will mobilize the efforts of the states that respect the UN Charter for countering the US’ plans on Venezuela, Russian Foreign Minister said
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Vladimir Gerdo/TASS
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov
© Vladimir Gerdo/TASS

TASHKENT, May 2. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has denounced the statement of Russia’s role in the situation in Venezuela made by the US representatives as untrue.

"The enumeration all that official representatives for the American administration say about Venezuela leads to endless questions, and as a rule, diplomatically speaking, the answer to all these questions would be ‘wrong,’" the top diplomat said, answering a TASS question.

Russia will mobilize the efforts of the states that respect the UN Charter for countering the US’ plans on Venezuela, Lavrov told reporters.

"Our position [on the US’ plans on Venezuela] will be very simple. We will mobilize a group of states that, like us, respect the UN Charter to counter such schemes," he said.

"This group is being formed in the UN, and I hope that it will receive serious support in the organization," the minister noted. "Because the issue is about a very simple thing which can hardly be distorted: the protection of the basic norms and principles of international law, the way they are enshrined in the UN Charter."

Disrespect for the peoples

Lavrov reiterated about the telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo held on Wednesday. "[Pompeo] called for abandoning support for Maduro and called on us and on Cuba not to interfere with Venezuela’s domestic affairs. All this story sounds rather surrealistic," the minister pointed out. "I answered him, proceeding from our principled position, that we never interfere with other’s affairs and call on others to do the same."

"I warned the US against returning to the Monroe Doctrine, as Washington had proclaimed to do, as it is possible to go too far this way. I believe that such vociferous statements to return to the 200-year doctrine mainly reflect disrespect not just for the Venezuelan people, but for the Latin American peoples in general," the minister said.

The contacts will continue

Lavrov noted that Moscow and Washington agreed to continue contacts on Venezuela, though their positions are incompatible. "As I understand it, Pompeo called me to say publicly afterwards that he called me and asked me not to interfere. He did it, and I think that we should close the door on it now. Still, we agreed to continue contacts, in particular on Venezuela," the minister said.

"However, I don’t see the way the positions can be combined - our positions, on the one hand, which are based on the UN Charter and principles and norms of international law and the positions of the US, on the other hand, which appoints from Washington ‘acting presidents’ in another country, demands that legitimate authorities capitulate and threatens to use force simultaneously with oppressive sanctions in order to change the regime," he went on. "The positions are incompatible, but we are ready to talk," Lavrov stressed.

The situation in Venezuela

Anti-governmental demonstrations were held in Caracas and other Venezuelan cities on Tuesday, after a military group had sided with opposition leader Juan Guaido.

On May 1, Lavrov said in a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo that Washington’s intervention into the domestic affairs of Venezuela, where the opposition attempted a coup d’etat, is inacceptable.

On April 30, US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo stated that Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro was allegedly ready to go to Cuba, but Russia talked him out of it. The Venezuelan president himself called it fake news. US National Security Advisor John Bolton also stated that Venezuela’s defense minister, president of the Supreme Tribunal of Justice and head of Venezuela’s presidential security service allegedly stated their readiness to support Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido.