The EU’s foreign policy chief yesterday condemned the expulsion of the EU’s ambassador to Venezuela ordered by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and said that the bloc would reciprocate.
“We condemn and reject the expulsion of our ambassador in Caracas. We will take the usual necessary reciprocal measures,” EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell wrote on Twitter.
Maduro on Monday gave Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa, the head of the EU mission in Caracas, 72 hours to leave the country after the bloc announced sanctions against 11 Venezuelan officials.
“Who are they to try to impose themselves with threats?” Maduro said. “We will sort it out in 72 hours ... she will be given a plane to leave, but we will arrange our things with the European Union.”
Venezuela’s airspace is closed to commercial airplanes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Maduro also accused the EU of getting down on its “knees” to US President Donald Trump, who has taken a hard line against the leftist leader, and copying “erratic policies” against the Latin American nation.
Relations have been tense since 2017, when Venezuela became the first Latin American country to receive sanctions from the EU, including an arms embargo.
Among the officials sanctioned on Monday was Maduro-backed opposition lawmaker Luis Parra, who is contesting the leadership of the opposition-controlled Venezuelan National Assembly with its president, Juan Guaido.
Guaido used his position as head of parliament to challenge Maduro’s authority in January last year by declaring himself acting president after the National Assembly deemed the socialist leader a usurper over his controversial re-election in 2018 in a poll widely branded fraudulent.
Guaido is recognized as his country’s interim president by more than 50 nations, including the US and much of the EU.
However, Parra declared himself National Assembly president in January, while security forces loyal to Maduro prevented Guaido from entering the building for a re-election vote he was widely expected to win.
“Only a negotiated solution between Venezuelans will allow the country to emerge from its deep crisis,” Borrell added in his tweet.
FRENCH AID: Paris has sent a navy ship and aircraft from Reunion Island with some pollution control equipment, but rough seas are spreading the oil spill The operator of a Japanese bulk carrier which ran aground off Mauritius in the Indian Ocean yesterday apologized for a major oil spill, which officials and environmentalists say is creating an ecological disaster, as police prepared to board the ship. The MV Wakashio, operated by Mitsui OSK Lines, struck the reef on Mauritius’ southeast coast on July 25. “We apologize profusely and deeply for the great trouble we have caused,” Mitsui OSK Lines executive vice president Akihiko Ono said at a news conference in Tokyo. The company would “do everything in their power to resolve the issue,” he said. At least 1,000 tonnes of
They stand as eyesores to most passers-by and potential public health risks to authorities, decaying buildings wrapped in tangles of exposed wire, studded with protruding leaky plastic pipes, vegetation billowing from cracks and terraces where particulates from polluted air have accumulated over time. With skyscrapers and ultramodern developments on every side, some of these “nail houses” are also sitting on land worth millions of dollars in Shenzhen’s inferno of a property market, where new-unit and second-hand home prices rival London. In battles over land and development, the nail house phenomenon has become widespread throughout China over the past two decades, with owners
A cat that went missing on a family holiday on the shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland, has been identified 12 years later. Tortoiseshell-and-white Georgie spent October half term in 2008 with her owners at the Rowardennan campsite, but vanished as they were due to return home to Greater Manchester, England. After a search of the site the Davies family departed without Georgie, hoping the three-year-old microchipped feline would be located by someone. Over the intervening 12 years, she remained close to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park site, being fed and cared for by campsite staff and holidaymakers. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit and lockdown
An Italian alpine resort on Friday remained on high alert over fears that a vast chunk of a glacier on the slopes of the Mont Blanc massif could plummet in high temperatures. “No one gets through! No cars, bikes or pedestrians,” was the message at a checkpoint where an automatic barrier and two guards blocked the small road snaking up into a lush valley below the Planpincieux glacier, near the town of Courmayeur and the Italian-French border. The blockade has largely been greeted with contempt by the locals, one of whom said: “It’s a joke.” The huge ice block measuring around 500,000 cubic