U.S. recalls its Venezuela staff as tensions mount

Mar 12, 2019, 6:16 AM EDT
Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro accused the U.S. of orchestrating nationwide blackouts.
(Source: Eneas De Troya/flickr)

The U.S. has announced the withdrawal of all its staff from Venezuela, as the relations between the two countries hit a new low amid prolonged blackouts in the South American nation, which, Nicolás Maduro says, have been orchestrated by Washington.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo cited Venezuela’s “deteriorating situation” for the pullout, adding that the presence of American staff in Caracas embassy has “become a constraint on U.S. policy,” writes the BBC.

America’s non-essential staff in Venezuela was recalled in January. In a televised nation-wide address on Tuesday, Maduro blamed the U.S. of launching an “electromagnetic attack,” an accusation that’s largely viewed as a desperate attempt by the leader to deflect attention from mismanagement, corruption, and incompetence of his regime, notes The Guardian.

An expert points out that the power outage across the nation has cut communication channels, eventually providing the government a monopoly of information and the opportunity to distribute its own propaganda of a White House conspiracy.