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  • Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro gestures as he talks to the media during a news conference at Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, Sept. 18, 2018.

    Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro gestures as he talks to the media during a news conference at Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, Sept. 18, 2018. | Photo: Reuters

Published 19 September 2018
Opinion

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro says he may not attend the annual U.N. General Assembly meeting in New York over fear of his life. 

During Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s press conference Tuesday (Sept. 18) he says he is unsure of whether he’ll participate in the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York that starts this week for safety concerns.

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"You know they have me in their sights to kill me ... I want to go to New York, but I have to take care of my security," Maduro said at a news conference, without elaborating.

Maduro has several times accused Venezuelan ex-military officers of conspiring to overthrow his government with the help of U.S factions based out of Florida. The head of state has also said that Colombian right-wing factions are also to blame for the attempt on his life.

Venezuela's president survived an attack on his life during a military parade celebrating the 81st anniversary of the Bolivarian National Guard in the capital of Caracas on Aug. 4. "They have tried to assassinate me today, and everything points to the Venezuelan ultra-right and the Colombian ultra-right,” Maduro said the same day.

Seven soldiers were injured in the event. Dozens of suspects have been arrested, including several military officials.

The New York Times reported on Sept. 8 that U.S. officials met with Venezuelan military officers as part of an attempt by U.S. President Donald Trump's administration to carry out an intervention and a coup against Maduro's government.

In recent days the Secretary-General of the Organization of American States (OAS) Secretary General Luis Almagro hinted toward military action against Venezuela. During a three-day visit to Colombia, the secretary general said: "As for a military intervention (in Venezuela) we should not rule out any option. ... Diplomatic action is the place to start, but we must not rule out any actions."

After being denounced by the communist party of his own country of Uruguay, Bolivian President Evo Morales, and even the right-wing Lima Group, Almagro denied saying he made any mention of military action in the South American country. He then compared the economic situation in Venezuela with the Rwandan genocide.

Maduro has not attended a General Assembly since 2015. The 73rd session began Tuesday and will run until Sept. 30.

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