CARACAS, Friday January 13, 2012 | Update

Chávez orders closure of Venezuelan consulate in Miami

During the presentation of his Report and Accounts, President Hugo Chávez ordered the closure of the consulate in Miami while his government assesses the facts in which Consul General Livia Acosta was allegedly involved

Chávez described as unfair the eviction of Consul General Livia Acosta (Photo: Efe)
Friday January 13, 2012  06:17 PM

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on Friday announced the closure of Venezuela's Consulate in Miami, after the US government expelled Venezuelan Consul General Livia Acosta last week.

"Foreign Minister (Nicolás Maduro) advised me to close the consulate. We have shut it down. There is no consulate in Miami," said the head of State during the presentation of his Report and Accounts at the National Assembly.

He added that he would not react by evicting a diplomat as the US government did, "what we will do is closing the consulate while we assess the situation."

He termed "unfair and outrageous" the expulsion of Acosta, adding that she "was doing her job."

"Dear Ambassadors, including the US government, we ask for respect (...) Some people here praise this (the eviction of the Venezuelan consul) even though it runs counter to our fatherland, our country," he said.

Good relations with Colombia

On the other hand, Chávez congratulated Maduro for the achievements made in 2011 in foreign policy. He stressed the efforts made to knock the rough edges off with Colombia.

"I do not know why they blame it on me. Check out the truth (...) We managed to defuse a bomb and we resumed normal and good relations with all governments," he said.

The end of a cycle

Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Brazil on March 13 to demand the ouster of embattled President Dilma Rousseff, carrying banners expressing anger at bribery scandals and economic woes. A banner read "We don't want a new Venezuela in Brazil."

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