Monday, 21 May, 2018

Pence informed United States leaders of Syria announcement

US pledges additional $16 million to help Venezuelan exiles United States Assisting Venezuelans in Need
Sammy Stanley | 14 April, 2018, 15:50

In the meantime, US Acting Secretary of State John Sullivan held talks with government leaders from Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras while attending the Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru, Department of State spokesperson Heather Nauert said in a readout.

The announcement came as Vice President Mike Pence arrived in Lima Friday for the eighth Summit of the Americas - an event that draws leaders from across the region.

No reason was given for the sudden departure.

Reporters travelling with Pence said he suddenly aborted his plans for a dinner and reception hosted by Peru's president and went back to his hotel, in time for Trump's televised address from Washington on the military action in response to a suspected poison gas attack in Syria.

On Wednesday, Trump spurred that speculation himself by taunting Russian Federation over possible action in Syria, which Moscow has been giving diplomatic and military support to.

Pence's meeting with Pena Nieto will follow Trump's recent calls to send National Guard troops to the border. During the meeting with four opposition leaders, Pence listened as they described their once-prosperous country devolving into chaos.

The countries, collectively named the Lima Group after the location of their first declaration, have vowed not to recognize the results of a May 20 Venezuelan presidential election that the opposition says Maduro has rigged in his favor.

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"Pence plans to meet with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto at the Summit of the Americas on Saturday morning", Agen said as quoted by the White House press pool on Friday.

Vice President Mike Pence says the US will provide almost $16 million in humanitarian aid for Venezuelans who have fled their country during the political crisis under President Nicolas Maduro. The U.S. has sanctioned Maduro and dozens of top officials, accusing the country of human rights abuses and sliding into a dictatorship.

Opposition leader David Smolansky says Maduro's government "has become a threat to the region".

Pence was whisked away from the Summit of the Americas late Friday so he could inform USA congressional leaders by phone of Trump's plans to announce the missile strikes. Many head to Brazil, Colombia and Panama, and often beyond.

Ana Quintana, a senior policy analyst on Latin America and the Western Hemisphere for the Heritage Foundation, said Pence would seek to "continue the momentum" of USA policy on Venezuela.

"Today, we have the president of the United States facing a trade war with China and other countries", Pinera said on a panel at a joint business summit on Friday. He's also expected to urge Latin American allies to maintain pressure on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

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