Foreign Minister Elias Jaua said on Monday that Venezuela will resort to “trade, energy, economic and political” measures if the United States applies sanctions or keeps meddling in the internal affairs of the country.
If the United States resorts to economic sanctions or otherwise, we will counter with trade, energy, economic and political measures as we deem necessary to respond forcefully to this unacceptable threat; we do not accept any empire threats said Jaua during an interview with Venezuelan government TV Channel Telesur in Ecuador, where he attended a meeting of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA).
You can be sure that faced with any kind of sanctions, we will respond with economic, political, social and diplomatic actions to defend the sacred rights of the Venezuelan people he added.
Minister Jaua also condemned remarks from Roberta Jacobson, Assistant U.S. Secretary of State for Latin America, who urged a full recount of the April 14 presidential election votes, as the most appropriate way to resolve the division in the country.
Jacobson claimed half of Venezuelans did not have confidence in the outcome of the election in which Nicolas Maduro was confirmed as the first ‘Chavista’ president and defeated his rival Henrique Capriles by a razor-edge margin of 1.78% of ballots, approx 265.000 out of almost fifteen million votes cast.
Capriles does admits the ‘legality’ but not the ‘legitimacy’ of the Sunday election results arguing there have been ‘innumerable irregularities’ and is demanding a full recount of the votes. The Venezuelan Electoral Council has accepted a full audit of votes cast, but not a recount. The opposition candidate calls Maduro ‘illegitimate’ president and says his administration is a ‘for the time being’ government until a final decision on the votes.
This does not mean that there is anything suspicious or not, but it would be better ... If there is a process in which everyone can have confidence in the results Ms Jacobson said in an interview with CNN in Spanish late Sunday.
Jaua said the Venezuelan government rejected the unacceptable statements of Ms. Roberta Jacobson, who had already had an on record unacceptable statement when she allegedly declared that ‘her candidate was Henrique Capriles...’ In Venezuela there is no recount of votes, because there is an electronic vote.
US Secretary of State John Kerry said last week that the United States has not decided whether to recognize Nicolas Maduro as Venezuela's new president, reiterating a call for a recount of the presidential votes as the opposition demands.
US-Venezuela relations have been strained for several years under former president Hugo Chavez. The improved for some time when Obama was elected in 2008, but quite soon it was all back to square one. Since 2010 the two countries have not had full ambassador representation in Caracas and Washington.