Venezuela, US spar at OAS Mexico meeting

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez fired back, criticizing Mexico's human rights record and highlighting poverty, violence and mass migration in Honduras and problems in other nations.

As the meeting took place, thousands of protesters took to the streets of the Venezuelan capital, Caracas, to protest against Nicolas Maduro's government.

OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro, speaking at the same news conference as the meeting began in the Mexican resort of Cancun, said there is a constitutional crisis in Venezuela.

Those scenes played out again Monday, as riot police and soldiers used tear gas and water cannon to block demonstrators from marching on central Caracas.

Amid the clashes on Caracas' main highway, 17-year-old Fabian Urbina was killed as the result of a bullet wound to the chest, local authorities said without providing more details.

Michael Fitzpatrick, US deputy assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs, thought "we had such an agreement earlier in the day".

CANCUN, Mexico (AP) - The United States and Venezuela exchanged harsh words Tuesday at the Organization of American States general assembly, after the US representative said the OAS must pass some kind of resolution on the troubled South American country to remain true to its principles.

Accompanied by Mexico's Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray, Almagro said that "the defense of democracy is an global principle and not interference". Maduro says the protests, along with the diplomatic efforts, are part of a plot by the U.S. to topple him. Despite the harassment, Ferrer said Ortega has no plans to resign or leave Venezuela.


"It can't be support for Venezuela absolutely because they've been good to us".

In an apparent reference to the incident, Interior Minister Nestor Reverol described an "improper and disproportionate use of force", saying on Twitter that several people had been injured and one killed.

Maduro contends the protests are part of a foreign plot to topple his government, and points to arson attacks on public buildings as evidence of what he calls terrorism.

Near-daily anti-government protests erupted in Venezuela on April 1, in the wake of a Supreme Court ruling stripping the powers of the opposition-majority legislature. Venezuela in response made a decision to withdraw from the OAS, a procedure that takes two years.

"Not only do we not recognise this meeting, we do not recognise any resolution coming out of it", Ms Rodriguez said.

The OAS foreign ministers will be seeking to reconcile two opposing proposals on Venezuela and send them to the regional group's general assembly, which is holding its annual meeting here this week. But the special session on Venezuela ended with no resolution approved.

However, it is not clear whether the OAS has the votes to pass even a relatively toothless resolution of condemnation that has no mention of sanctions or other repercussions.

"The issue of Venezuela will continue, because the crisis in Venezuela isn't going to end today, either".


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