15:48 GMT26 February 2021
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    Political Crisis in Venezuela (579)

    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Friday announced military drills which will take place on 10-15 February; the forces are poised to practice defending the nation's territory, coast and rivers from foreign invaders. In addition, the military will review its mechanism for civil and military mobilisation.

    On Sunday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro visited several military bases and met with members of the armed forces.

    After head of the National Assembly head Juan Guaido declared himself the nation's interim president, the US, Canada and many Latin American and European states recognising the opposition leader and the country's head-of-state, Maduro said the National Armed Forces must be prepared to defend Venezuela and announced massive military exercises.

    "We are preparing for the most important military exercises in our history," Maduro said during his visit to the military bases.

    He has already visited the 41th Armoured Brigade at Fort Paramacay and the Naval Base Agustín Armario, in the city of Puerto Cabello.

    Defence Minister Vladimir Padrino said earlier that the Venezuelan army did not support the self-proclaimed leader and was ready to protect national sovereignty.

    Maduro accused Washington of orchestrating a coup in the Latin American country and said that Caracas was severing diplomatic ties with Washington. US-Venezuelan relations have been strained for longer than Maduro has been in office; Trump said in August 2017 that he did not rule out a "military option" to put end to the chaos in Venezuela.

    Political Crisis in Venezuela (579)


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    military drills, army, troops, Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela
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