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Chavez Blasts U.S. Arms Embargo
Venezuelan leader claims U.S. policy is harmful to other nations
Amit Pyakurel (ammykumars)     Print Article 
Published 2006-05-17 02:48 (KST)   
While terrorism has traumatized the world in a nonsensical manner, controversies have also followed regarding the fight against terrorism. The issue has been ever debated, in particular on which basis such a fight should be imposed. Is it through the motive of erasing the terrorists forcefully, as per the example portrayed from the invasions in Afghanistan and Iraq, which seemed to neglect the possibility of significant deaths of innocents, or winning the hearts and minds of the terrorists, moreover by finding out the root causes of terrorism as the intellects argue?

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez
©2006 un.org
The U.S. government, which is to say the Bush administration, is in the forefront in the "fight against terrorism," more so since the unfortunate attack on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Many critics -- especially those from the Islamic world, but also from the broader spectrum of the world community that hates terrorism and supports world peace -- view President George W. Bush's policies as an "imperialistic" approach rather than a genuine understanding of the cause of terrorism.

Amid such arguments, the latest controversy has followed regarding the United States' claim against the Venezuelan government for its "noncompliance" in the counter-terrorism efforts, for which the Bush administration has banned arms sales to the state from Monday onwards.

According to Darla Jordan, a State Department spokeswoman, there has been a nearly "total lack of cooperation" with anti-terrorism approaches from the Venezuelan government.

However, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has dismissed the arms suspension policy of the United States "as a ratification of the empire knocking down small and weak nations," and said that this ban was not going to matter to the Venezuelan government at all. While on a visit to London, he said that his government would not respond to "punitive measures," for instance the travel restrictions imposed by the U.S. Giving an interview to the Associated Press, the president said, "There's no way we will do that. We will find a solution to this."

Referring to the United States as "an irrational regime," Chavez said it's an empire and has a great capacity to do harm to the countries of the world. Citing that "today, it's Venezuela; tomorrow it can be any country," the president proclaimed that his government doesn't need to caution the world against the "empire's threat." In London where the president is currently staying, said that it is imperialism that attacks the countries in the world and defied the U.S. embargo, saying that such attempts wouldn't stop his government.

President Chavez, however, claimed that Venezuela has "big friends" in the world who would help the regime "defend itself against imperialism," according to the report from the AP. Chavez stressed that Venezuela is not a militarized country and doesn't buy nuclear weapons and rockets like the United States does.

However, Chavez assured that oil sales to the United States would continue, though he condemned the U.S. suspension of the weapons sales to his country. He said that he is "keenly" aware of his responsibility.

©2006 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Amit Pyakurel

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