In a press conference with international reporters yesterday President Maduro again pointed to the US State Department, Colombian ex-President Álvaro Uribe, and the “international media” as being behind the recent opposition protests in the country, which he characterized as an “on-going coup” against his government.
Most of the conference was devoted to what he called a “international media campaign to demonize” his image: “some in the media, such as CNN, have participated in the campaign organized by the right, which is similar to the one they organized against comandante Chávez at the end of 2001 and the beginning of 2002.”
Earlier, the Communication Ministry (MINCI) had announced it was opening an investigation against CNN for its reporting of the recent events in Venezuela. CNN reporters Osmary Hernández and Patricia Janiot were stripped of their press credentials and asked to leave the country.
According to the Agencia Venezolana de Noticias (AVN) “The President denounced mass media for promoting a campaign that aims at dividing Latin America, and also seeks to create a perception that Venezuela is at the doors of a civil war, thus filling millions of people in the world with hatred.”
The plot by the US State department, in cahoots with the “international mass media” would, according to Maduro, include “the continuous attack by violent groups in the country in order to weaken the government by causing civil commotion, [confronting] the people against the people, causing division among the armed forces, with the aim of justifying the intervention of a military force of NATO or the United States.” The note press published by AVN added that “these plans also include the toppling of the government and have been plotted and decided by power groups in the Pentagon and the offices of the Department of Defense of the United States.”
The President however also said that it was time to “solve our differences with the United States through diplomatic and political means,” and offered his willingness to exchange ambassadors between the US and Venezuela.