Venezuela will not let in designated US envoy

Friday, September 17, 2010

CARACAS - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Friday that he will not let Larry Palmer, the designated US ambassador to Venezuela, into the country.

Palmer is unsuitable as an ambassador, Chavez said, for his comments to the US Senate on the allegedly poor morale of the Venezuelan Air Force.

“An irresponsible government like that of (US President Barack) Obama, a murderous, coup-perpetrating government - that is the Yankee empire,” Chavez said.

“They come and designate Palmer as ambassador and, in the good spirit of having bearable ties, we said it was fine. But then he started to give comments, to attack our country, the government, the people and the armed forces. Sir, you are disqualified. Don’t even show up here, because we would not even let you onto Venezuelan territory. Let that be clear.”

Chavez said he did not care whether Washington sends an ambassador at all.

“And if they want to throw out our ambassador, let them throw her out,” he said.

Chavez called Obama “irresponsible” for Washington’s release of a report that accused Venezuela of not cooperating in the fight against drug trafficking. Chavez “categorically” rejected the report.

“The first government that violates I don’t know how many laws, which facilitates, which backs terrorism, drug trafficking, that would be the government of the United States,” he said. “We would need to put it first on the list.”

Chavez was speaking on the campaign trail for the Sep 26 legislative election.

Filed under: Diplomacy

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