Pompeo: Maduro wanted to leave Venezuela, Russia told him to stay

Channel: Fox Business
Published: 6 hours ago

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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says U.S. sanctions have crippled the leadership inside Venezuela and that Russia told disputed Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro to stay in the country. FOX Business Network (FBN) is a financial news channel delivering real-time information across all pl...



Transcript
I spoke with secretary of state mike pompeo on why doz call for a military uprising just moments ago, and whether or not one guy doing the venezuelan people will be able to count on the united states of america for support watch. Did you have any idea? This was coming because the expectation was that it was all gon na start tomorrow and instead it started today. So we've been at this quite a while ...
and we knew that there would come a day where there were important activities and tomorrow there will be. We think lots of folks in the street, and this will be a continued part of our effort to restore democracy inside of venezuela are youseeing the response you anticipated or had hoped for mr. secretary, so i think in large measure we have seen that we can see That maduro is so far unable to show himself. We haven't seen maduro for an awfully long time. Today, he's hiding somewhere. There were a handful of people that had made clear. They were coming across to the side to leave maduro the defense minister padrino, the head of the supreme court moreno, the head of the presidential guard hernandez dala they'd all indicated that they were prepared to help the venezuelan people, get their democracy back they've not made a Move, that's the strongest. We will help. We continue to believe that they understand wherethe right side of history is and we're very hopeful that in the coming hours or days, they'll make that decision. Okay, we indeed hopes on how do you make sure that the change happens swiftly quickly now, because the people need it? Sir? Well, at the end of the day, this this change will be driven by the venezuelan people, the work so far over the last three months, plus now we're one.

Where, though, announced that he'd be the interim president, where the national assembly supported that effort. All of these things have been driven by the venezuelan people. I'M convinced that the tide of history is with them that they're going to demand that we stand readyto help you've seen the work that we've done to put sanctions on that have literally crippled the leadership inside of venezuela. They have made it so difficult for the venezuelan regime to continue to pay their soldiers pay their military we've seen what material has done, which has caused children not to be able to eat and sick kids not to be able to get medicine. In spite of the fact that the united states taxpayers delivered a couple hundred of metric tons of food and medicine to their very border - and these are the kind of things that will drive the venezuelan people to make the change that you're. Speaking of and i'm very hopeful that this willcome and this will happen in the coming days, what do we do about some of these, these outside players that are involved? I mean you have the president very angry with cuba right now, and i know we've put some sanctions into place with cuba. I imagine there's more, we can do but don't forget, as you well know, sir, the cubans are the ones that are effectively the lifeline for nicolas maduro and his socialist dictatorship. The russians as well are in the background, and even the chinese. That'S that's absolutely right on all three counts. It is the case that central to maduro security has been the cuban kleptocracy they've cut a deal with the venezuelans fortens of thousands of cheap barrels of oil. Every day they provided security for maduro. It'S it's frankly.

If you're a venezuelan military leader, it's a bit embarrassing to have to hand over your senior leader to the cubes and say you take care of him. Well, we've done is we've raised the cost for cuba. We'Ve begun began that several weeks back, we put on increased pressure on cuba, there's more to follow you've seen what the president is has just communicated we're gon na raise the cost. If cuba wants to continue this millian activity and wants to continue the destruction of venezuela, that's going to come in at an enormous cost to the cuban leadership in terms ofthe cost to the us. What more can we do? Because there are some lawmakers now, including senator scott from florida who are saying, we need to be prepared to take this all the way and we need stand with the people, even if that means military involvement. Is it going to get to that? I hope not, but the president's made clear we're prepared to do that. If that's, what ultimately is required, it's it's our hope that the violence levels will remain low. We saw violence today. We regret that we're watching to see who chooses violence and who's choosing other means. We'Ll hold those folks accountable when the time is right, but the president's made very clearif. The situation calls forth. The military option remains on the table and we've seen already military presence there.

Not all of the cubans that we've been speaking up with the russians have military on the ground there, and so i hear people talk about. They don't want the americans to intervene in venezuela when, in fact, it's the russians who have intervened and they've done so without the consent of the government. They came in with the former regime of materials, nicolas maduro his permission, but without the president of the duly elected government led by led today by the interim president 1y, though, the united states stands ready to do the things it needs to do to workwith our allies. Now some 54 nations that have recognized this new leader to ensure that the venezuelan democracy that the people are demanding there is ultimately delivered. Tell me some more about the russians, because what is their goal here? What are they doing right here in our western hemisphere? Direct violation by the way through word of monro doctrine, is this payback, for you know us being involved in nato. I wonder what's really going through their heads and what kind of role they have had in keeping nicolas maduro they're, given the sanctions - and you know economic pain so that we have put him through. So i think at least one of their objectives is plain: oldgreed. The crude oil there in venezuela there rosneft is there. There are russian companies that that get that crude oil they've provided supplies. They'Ve they've allowed some of that crude oil operation to continue there in venezuela. So i think one of the elements is they're owed money by venezuela and they've liked that money paid back. I think, there's a second purpose which is they've had a long, deep relationship with venezuela.

These are non democratic governments who often find themselves on the same side of issues and don't like western governments, don't like democracies, and so the fact that the venezuela people are seeking democracy is antithetical to their understanding about how nations ought to work. Soi think there's left had the russians not intervened, sir. Yes, i do think he. What, if i think, the support that has been provided by the russians, combined with the support that has been continued to being provided by the cubans, has provided maduro sufficient support that he likely would have had to left, and you had to have left had that not Been the case, so i just wonder what how close he might have been. What are your intelligence people telling you on that? So we talked hundreds of people on the ground today and over the past several months, it's very clear that maduro had intended to leave that he had his plane, ready and thatthe russians made clear that he ought not depart at this time. Wow, i mean that's, that's significant and it shows you what we're actually, i suppose, dealing with there. It'S it's part and parcel of the deep desire to prevent the venezuelan people from being successful in having a democracy and having their economy restored. We see it in the micro that i just described and we see it in bigger issues, economic issues. We see it in security issues, every element of power, that's being brought to bear to keep the maduro regime in place there in venezuela. Can i ask you how how are you thinking about quango? I do right now and even leopoldo lopez canwe do anything to protect them because without them, secretary pompeo, i don't know where this goes, we're doing everything we can to ensure that no harm comes to any of the leaders who choose the right course that go in The right direction for democracy, a one where, though, would certainly be at the center of that - has been very, very bold and very outspoken and very willing to take risks for himself you saw today he was out and about he was in the streets. We'Ve all seen. The pictures, interestingly, we've not seen pictures of nicolas maduro, he's been hiding out today and so we're doing all that we can to protect that only one way, thoughbut all of those who have chosen the side of freedom and democracy.

That'S all of the members of the nationalism for asking, but i'm just do we have security teams there to help them and to surround them because they're awfully exposed, i mean hwang wide. Oh he's very exposed and he's going up and talking to all the people and greeting them, and you know if nicolas maduro wanted to be really aggressive and he certainly has shown he can be with those colectivos. What do we do then? Well, we've made clear our expectations that no harm or violence will come to one way, though i don't want to talk about the details of the security situationon the ground, but not only has the united states made that clear. There have been more than 50 nations that made clear that imprisoning or harming one where there would be a significant step up in the threat that is posed, and i think that the world would respond strongly were the leaders there were maduro actually to take. That course, of action,.


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