Tensions escalate over delivery of aid to Venezuela
February 8, 2019 -- Aid convoys from international allies supporting Venezuela’s opposition risk becoming the focus of confrontation with troops loyal to President Nicolás Maduro.
Juan Guaido, the self-declared interim president, has welcomed an offer from the United States of $20 million of food and medicines, and the supplies are being transported to the border. But Mr Maduro, who has the support of the army, views the aid effort as a pretext for a U.S.-led military
Venezuelan soldiers are using a fuel tanker and cargo containers to cut off access to the Tienditas bridge, which links the Colombian border town of Cucuta to Venezuela.
The United Nations has warned against using aid as a pawn in Venezuela.
Venezuela's socialist economic system has been severely hit following the collapse of world oil prices in 2014. Inflation has skyrocketed, and since 2016, more than three million Venezuelans have fled to neighbouring countries amid a shortage of food and medicine in the country.