by Rachael Boothroyd, 22 August 2011.
This Sunday, Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez reiterated his condemnation of NATO’s bombing of Libya, amidst international media reports that the Libyan rebels were advancing on the city of Tripoli.
During a press conference, Chávez, who had recently returned from chemotherapy treatment in Cuba, described the actions of the U.S. and certain European governments as a “massacre” and repeated his call for peace for the people of the world.
“The democratic European governments, not all of them, but we know which ones, are practically demolishing Tripoli with their bombs; the supposedly Democrat and democratic U.S. government as well, because they feel like it, simply because they feel like it,” said the Venezuelan president.
Chávez has continuously denounced the NATO-backed intervention in Libya since it began in March, and maintains that the U.S., France, and Great Britain are involved for cynical and strategic reasons, as well as to take advantage of Libya’s oil and extensive gold reserves.
“Today they dropped I don’t know how many bombs, and they are falling in a totally shameless and open way, they no longer even bother to explain anything, falling on schools, hospitals, homes, places of work, factories, agricultural farms, right now at this very moment” continued the president.
For his part, PSUV (United Socialist Party of Venezuela) representative Rodrigo Cabezas, denounced the use of ‘criminal force’ by NATO in what he described as a an act of “territorial aggression”. The PSUV legislator also claimed that 5,000 civilians had been killed since the beginning of the conflict and that a similar number had been seriously injured.
Venezuelan Opposition Seeks to “Unleash Violence”
In further statements, Chávez urged the Venezuelan people to ‘neutralise’ the Venezuelan opposition’s plans to destabilise the country, and stated that members of the opposition political forces were trying to unleash violence in Venezuela.
Members of the National Assembly convened a special meeting this Monday to discuss concerns of an opposition attack on the Venezuelan state. PSUV representatives claim that the opposition is trying to “create panic and promote an international intervention” within the South American nation.
Santos Amaral, PSUV representative, remarked that the opposition and their media were currently creating a political climate in Venezuela similar to that of the days preceding the April 2002 coup, during which democratically elected Chávez was temporarily ousted and more than 50 Venezuelans died at the hands of the interim government.
“We (the PSUV) hope that nobody is wishing for, is asking for a Libyan solution to life in Venezuela, one that entails a military attack, that entails death” said PSUV representative Rodrigo Cabezas.