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A CONVOY of opposition leaders left Caracas for the border in white buses today, claiming they will obtain US aid currently waiting at the Colombian border and deliver it.
Self-proclaimed “president” Juan Guaido, an opposition MP in the defunct National Assembly, said he would head up the convoy but didn’t show up.
His fans said he would be travelling to the border incognito to avoid being turned back.
The US has stockpiled 70 tons of food and medicine at Cucuta in Colombia in a stunt aimed at undermining the elected government of Nicolas Maduro.
The aid offered is insignificant in comparison to the devastating effect of US sanctions on the country’s economy and the theft of government property including oil assets in the Caribbean by US firms such as ConocoPhillips and gold which the Bank of England is refusing to release.
But the US intends to provoke a confrontation by forcing the entry of aid, which it could then deploy troops to protect as a step towards military invasion.
Cuba has noted an enormous build-up of US military force in the Caribbean and warned in a government statement published in tomorrow’s Morning Star that the US is seeking to “forcibly establish a ‘humanitarian corridor’ under ‘international supervision,’ invoke the ‘obligation to protect’ civilians and take ‘all necessary steps’.”
Large food and medical aid shipments have arrived in Venezuela from the country’s allies, including Cuba, China and Russia.
But President Maduro has told troops not to allow the US convoy to enter, prompting US President Donald Trump to call on Venezuelan soldiers to mutiny or “lose everything.”
Rival concerts are now due to take place at the border, with British billionaire Richard Branson sponsoring one on the Colombian side calling on Venezuela to open its border to the US.
Venezuela has responded by saying it will hold its own concert at the same time on the opposite side.
Yesterday saw mobilisations of supporters and opponents of the government in Caracas, while an enormous “march for peace” in Ciudad Bolivar, a city near the Brazilian and Guyanese borders, saw tens of thousands rally against foreign interference with their country.
“Venezuela is a country of warriors who will stand against anybody,” National Constitutional Assembly president Diosdado Cabello declared.
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