In Brief

Venezuela blockades bridge to stop aid

Embattled president Nicolas Maduro has rejected foreign aid amid economic crisis

Venezuelan troops have blockaded a bridge that connects the country to Colombia, in an apparent bid by President Nicolas Maduro to stop international humanitarian aid being delivered.

Two shipping containers and an oil tanker have been positioned on the Tienditas international bridge, near the Colombian city of Cucuta, which was one of three designated staging points for the delivery of aid.

The convoy, donated by the United States, left Bogota on Wednesday morning, and was due to cross the bridge later today.

The aid was organised by opposition leader and self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guaido, who called on the international community for help as Venezuela continues to sink into further economic collapse.

However, Maduro has “repeatedly denied his economically devastated country is facing a humanitarian crisis, apparently fearing such an acceptance could be used to justify foreign military intervention”, The Guardian says.

In a speech to his troops this week, Maduro insisted that Venezuela did not need any international help, saying: “We are not beggars.”

Reuters reports that the United Nations has issued a warning against “using aid as a pawn in Venezuela”. UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters in New York: “Humanitarian action needs to be independent of political, military or other objectives.”

The blockade comes just days after Maduro appeared to threaten Guaido with imprisonment.

John Bolton, Donald Trump’s national security adviser, has previously said that violence or intimidation of Guaido or other opposition leaders “would represent a grave assault on the rule of law and will be met with a significant response”.

Recommended

Putin and Russia’s territorial ambitions
A large column of Russian military vehicles and troops move in the direction of the Crimean capital of Simferopol in February 2014
Getting to grips with . . .

Putin and Russia’s territorial ambitions

‘Cabinet angry at defending Johnson again’
Today’s newspaper front pages
Today’s newspapers

‘Cabinet angry at defending Johnson again’

No. 10 tells Peter Andre: siestas wouldn’t work here
Peter Andre on stage
Tall Tales

No. 10 tells Peter Andre: siestas wouldn’t work here

Grey squirrels could run up £37m tree bill
A grey squirrel
Tall Tales

Grey squirrels could run up £37m tree bill

Popular articles

Are we heading for World War Three?
Ukrainian soldiers patrol on the frontline in Zolote, Ukraine
In Depth

Are we heading for World War Three?

What happened to Logan Mwangi?
Tributes left to Logan Mwangi
Today’s big question

What happened to Logan Mwangi?

Nato vs. Russia: who would win in a war?
Nato troops
Today’s big question

Nato vs. Russia: who would win in a war?

The Week Footer Banner