Category Archives: Venezuela

Nicolás Maduro: Fury over Venezuela leader’s Salt Bae ‘feast’

Video of Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro eating in an upscale steak restaurant in Turkey has caused outrage in crisis-hit Venezuela.

The images show Turkish celebrity chef Nusret Gokce, also known as “Salt Bae” carving meat in front of the president and his wife, Cilia Flores, at Gokce’s Nusr-Et restaurant in Istanbul.

Almost two-thirds of Venezuelans have reported losing weight as shortages of food worsened in recent years.

Red meat is especially scarce.


Venezuelan firemen face 20 years in prison for donkey video mocking Maduro

wo Venezuelans firemen who made a viral video portraying President Nicolas Maduro as a donkey were jailed on Sunday pending trial on charges of inciting hate and could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted, right groups said.

Ricardo Prieto, 41, and Carlos Varon, 45, were arrested by military counterintelligence officers on Wednesday at the fire station where they worked in western Merida state, according to the human rights observatory of the University of the Andes in Merida, which is tracking the case.


In Venezuela, Huge Hike in Minimum Wage Forces 40 Percent of Stores to Close

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro decided that the best way to deal with the country’s hyperinflation was to raise the minimum wage.

Sounds harmless, doesn’t it? Who could begrudge poor people a little raise in wages?

Except that inflation in Venezuela is currently running at about 2400 percent a year — 200 percent in August alone. And Maduro increased the minimum wage 3,500 percent while forbidding store owners from raising prices.

h/t Dr. J


Venezuela’s socialist miracle now has an annual inflation rate over 100,000 percent

Venezuela introduced a new currency on Aug. 20 as a hopeful solution to the country’s rapidly devaluing currency and skyrocketing inflation rates, but after just a few weeks, Venezuela is already seeing 100 percent inflation.

The Venezuelan government issued the new currency, called the “sovereign” bolivar, to replace the “strong” bolivar, NPR reported on the day of the rollout.

The new bolivar is worth about 100,000 of the old bolivars, and is pegged to the government’s cryptocurrency, the petro.


Venezuela: is a US-backed ‘military option’ to oust Maduro gaining favour?

When Donald Trump first floated the idea of a “military option” in Venezuela last year, he was widely rebuffed by regional leaders and policy experts.

Even the US president’s closest aides were reportedly stunned by the suggestion of an invasion – which for many in Latin America evoked bitter memories of previous US forays in the region.

Direct US intervention remains a fringe idea, but a small section of the Venezuelan opposition appears to be receptive to the possibility of a military coup to remove the country’s increasingly authoritarian president Nicolás Maduro.

Why not?


US official: Venezuela government ‘steals from food programme’

The US has accused Venezuela’s government of stealing from a state-run food programme while its own people go hungry.

Marshall Billingslea, a US treasury official, said Venezuelan government officials were over-charging for food.

He said corruption by President Nicolás Maduro and his inner circle had “impoverished millions” of Venezuelans.


NYT: Trump Administration Met With Venezuelan Military Coup Plotters

Seems like old times, or at least that’s how this will be seen in South America if true. The New York Times reports that the Trump administration met clandestinely with rebellious Venezuelan military officers looking to stage a coup to overthrow Nicolas Maduro. Nothing came of the meetings, but this leaves the US in a very shaky — and familiar — position


The Man Who Predicted the Venezuelan Catastrophe in 1893

On 19 August, the Guardian reported that Venezuelans fleeing their country’s economic, political, and humanitarian crisis are being attacked by natives of neighbouring countries, who have grown weary of the relentless influx of migrants (a term that sounds increasingly euphemistic—’refugees’ is a more accurate descriptor). For nearly 20 years, Venezuela’s regime has blamed foreign actors and ‘neoliberal’ subversives for every woe and calamity that has befallen the country. But the disastrous results of the Bolivarian socialist experiment were both predictable and widely predicted—and not just by contemporary observers and analysts. They were also foretold 125 years ago by a now-obscure German politician, journalist, and author named Eugen Richter.


Spain sees huge spike in Venezuelans seeking asylum

Most of the asylum applications filed in Spain in recent years have come not from African or Middle Eastern refugees, but rather South American nationals. The number of Venezuelan asylum-seekers in particular has risen dramatically.

“For three years now, most of those seeking safety in Spain have been Venezuelan nationals,” Maria Jesus Vega, spokesperson for the UN refugee agency (UNHCR), told DW. She noted that Venezuelans filed 4,200 asylum applications in 2016, 10,600 in 2017, and 12,700 so far this year. According Spain’s department for asylum-seekers and refugees, OAR, the second-highest number of asylum applications were filed by Colombian nationals, followed by Syrians.


Venezuela: The bridge of desperation

The humanitarian crisis in Venezuela has led to one of the largest mass migrations in Latin America’s history.

President Nicolás Maduro blames “imperialists” – the likes of the US and Europe – for waging “economic war” against Venezuela and imposing sanctions on many members of his government.

But his critics say it is economic mismanagement – first by predecessor Hugo Chávez and now President Maduro himself – that has brought Venezuela to its knees.

The country has the largest proven oil reserves in the world. It was once so rich that Concorde used to fly from Caracas to Paris. Now, its economy is in tatters.


Venezuela lops five zeroes off its bolivar bank notes as socialist regime tries to curb hyperinflation

Venezuela is poised to launch a new currency that will lop five zeroes off the old one as President Nicolas Maduro tries to get to grips with the country’s spiralling economic crisis.

Banks across the country closed on Monday ahead of the launch of the ‘sovereign bolivar’, which will be issued on Tuesday.


Ecuador tightens entry rules for Venezuelan migrants

Ecuador has brought in new rules to stop Venezuelan migrants entering the country without a passport, leaving many stranded in neighbouring Colombia.

Thousands of Venezuelans fleeing their country’s economic and political crisis have been crossing into Ecuador from Colombia using only identity cards.

Most are heading south to join family members in Peru and Chile.

Colombia has protested against the move, saying vulnerable people will be trapped on its side of the border.

In a separate incident, residents of a Brazilian town attacked a Venezuelan migrant camp on Saturday and drove the occupants back across the border.

Justin better call them racists or they’ll just keep doin it!


Venezuela has dirt-cheap fuel, so why is driving nearly impossible?

In crisis-hit Venezuela, one dollar can buy two Polar beers, a dozen eggs, or a bar of chocolate. Or, taking advantage of the black market exchange rate, it’s enough for 3.5m litres of petrol.

But the 92 tankers needed to carry the fuel would probably be stuck at the pump, broken down and without replacement parts.

Fuel in the oil-rich nation may be practically free, but motorists are finding it increasingly hard to keep their vehicles on the road. Petrol shortages are ever more common: motorists commonly wait for six hours or more in fuel queues.

Justin’s handling of our oil sector is a concern no?