Venezuela rejects US drug-report accusations

Reaction follows claim that South American country is failing to meet its obligations in fighting narcotics trafficking.

    Venezuela rejects US drug-report accusations
    The US report cites Venezuela as a major conduit for cocaine coming from neighbouring Colombia [Reuters]

    Venezuela has rejected a US report that criticised the South American country of failing to meet its obligations in fighting the drug trade.

    President Barack Obama's annual drugs memorandum that was published on Friday said Venezuela remains "one of the preferred trafficking routes out of South America", thanks to its "porous western border with Colombia", a top cocaine producer.

    The US also mentioned Venezuela's "weak judicial system, inconsistent international counternarcotics co-operation and generally permissive and corrupt environment."

    President Hugo Chavez's government dismissed the accusations in a statement on Saturday..

    "As the biggest drug consumer on the planet, the United States lacks the moral authority to judge the policies of other countries," Venezuela's foreign ministry said.

    The statement also accused the US of "permanent aggressiveness against independent governments such as Venezuela's in order to impose, through intimidation, its policy of international domination and abuse".

    Chavez, a socialist seeking re-election next month, is a ferocious critic of the US, and his near 14-year rule has been characterised by frequent bilateral spats and incidents.

    Accused by critics of collusion with Colombian rebels who depend on smuggling for financing, the Chavez government says that anti-narcotics operations have actually improved since 2005, when Chavez ejected US drug-enforcement agents, accusing them of spying.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    The peace games: Dreaming big for South Sudan's youth

    The peace games: Dreaming big for South Sudan's youth

    A relatively new independence and fresh waves of conflict inspire a South Sudanese refugee to build antiwar video games.