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Venezuela's Maduro calls OAS head a traitor

Venezuela's parliament on Thursday formally solicited for OAS action.

By Andrew V. Pestano
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Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said the head of the Organization of American States is working to advance U.S. interests in his country. File Photo courtesy the United Nations
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said the head of the Organization of American States is working to advance U.S. interests in his country. File Photo courtesy the United Nations

CARACAS, Venezuela, May 19 (UPI) -- Luis Almagro, the secretary general of the Organization of American States, fiercely rejected and condemned Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro over accusations of being a "traitor."

The recent spat between both men began on Tuesday when Maduro told journalists that Almagro "has been a traitor for a long time."

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"At some point I will tell his story. I know his secrets," Maduro said in reference to his accusation that Almagro works as the head of the OAS to advance the interests of the United States. "The Americans, the CIA, have played a master move using Almagro as their agent."

Almagro didn't take kindly to Maduro's remarks. Using Twitter, the secretary general posted 12 tweets directly calling out the leader on Wednesday.

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"I'm not a traitor either to my ideas or my principles BUT YOU ARE A TRAITOR to your people," Almagro wrote.

"You will NEVER be able to undo so much suffering, intimidation, misery and anguish you've created for your people," Almagro wrote in another.

Maduro did not reply directly to Almagro's commentary, but the Venezuelan president's foreign minister, Delcy Rodriguez, replied.

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"Mr. Almagro, every time you make a statement you express your hatred against Venezuela and its legitimate authorities. You are part of the imperialist detritus," Rodriguez wrote.

"You only repeat the scripted words which your imperialist masters dictate to you," Rodriguez added. "You will never give orders to Venezuela!"

Almagro replied to Rodriguez by saying that "A lie, although repeated a thousand times, will never be truth."

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Meanwhile, on Thursday, Luis Florido, of Venezuela's opposition-controlled National Assembly, delivered a solicitation to Almagro urging the secretary general to invoke the OAS' Inter-American Democratic Charter, which would initiate an emergency Permanent Council meeting over fears of a diminishing democracy in Venezuela.

Venezuela's consent is not required if the OAS were to invoke the charter.

"Our call to the world: Raise your voices for Venezuela! Let us avoid the aggravation of the humanitarian crisis and the continuing deaths of innocent Venezuelans," Florido said in a statement.

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