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Venezuela hands protest letter to the US

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez speaks during a press conference in Caracas on March 27, 2015 (AFP Photo) Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez speaks during a press conference in Caracas on March 27, 2015 (AFP Photo)
CARACAS, March 28, 2015- Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez announced Friday that her country has handed a formal letter of protest to the United States embassy in Caracas to reject the White House's recent executive order calling Venezuela a threat to U.S. security.

Rodriguez said Venezuela had sent an "emphatic note of protest" against President Barack Obama's March 9 executive order, which imposed an asset freeze and US travel ban on seven senior Venezuelan officials.

Obama's order declared Venezuela a "threat to the national security of the United States" -- language that US officials said was a formality for imposing sanctions, but to which Venezuela has strongly objected.

Rodriguez pointed out that Venezuela has tried several diplomatic measures in order to mediate with the U.S. government and to convince them to repeal the order. However if U.S. officials continue to reject mediation attempts, the foreign minister said Venezuela will not rule out using legal channels to change the U.S.'s decision, including appealing to international law.

The Venezuelan foreign minister also noted the international support that her country has received from various regional bodies, including CELAC, UNASUR, ALBA, and the G77 and China, among others.

These organizations have all rejected the U.S. sanctions against Venezuela — punitive measures, which violate international law.

“This should allow the government of the United States to reflect. Look at a map, a map that shows the whole world is telling the U.S, its government and its administration to cease aggression against Venezuela,” said Rodriguez in a speech, showing a world map that highlights countries that have spoken out against the President Barack Obama's executive order.

The countries standing in solidarity with Venezuela also demand that the U.S. respect the integrity of sovereign states, open political dialogue, and understanding between nations in order to find non-violent solutions to the tensions between the two nations.

The order "interferes in Venezuela's internal affairs by labeling (the country) an unusual and extraordinary threat," Rodriguez told journalists.

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