Maduro: Coup attempt 'failed' in Venezuela

The corporate logos of the state oil company PDVSA and Citgo Petroleum Corp

The first wave of aid arrived February 8 and included locally purchased food kits, hygiene kits, medical supplies, ready-to-use supplementary foods and high-energy biscuits, USAID said.

More than 200 tons of US humanitarian aid intended for Venezuela is scheduled to begin arriving just across the border in Colombia Saturday, delivered by USA military cargo planes.

On Friday he instructed his army to prepare a "special deployment plan" for the 2,200-kilometer (1,370-mile) border with Colombia.

USA national security adviser John Bolton made the announcement on the aid pledged to Venezuela following an Organization of American States conference on assisting the country.

"We have to do something to save so many people who are suffering and dying for lack of medicine", she said.

Humanitarian aid has become a key issue in the power struggle between Maduro and Guaido.

The U.S. Air Force has begun flying tons of aid to a Colombian town on the Venezuelan border as part of an effort meant to undermine socialist President Nicolas Maduro.

A grave economic crisis has left millions in the once-wealthy country living in poverty, facing shortages of basic necessities such as food and medicine.

The United States and several allies, who have backed self-proclaimed interim president Guaido, have been urging President Nicolas Maduro to step down and calling for new elections in Venezuela.

Maduro meanwhile blames Venezuela's woes on U.S. sanctions.

A view of food suplements packs after U.S. Air Force aircrafts carrying humanitarian aid for Venezuela landed at Camilo Daza International Airport in Cucuta, February 16, 2019.

Speaking on Friday, Maduro said six million families had benefited from subsidized food boxes and claimed to have bought 933 tons of medicines and medical supplies from China, Cuba and Russian Federation, his main worldwide allies.

Speaking at a celebration of the 200th anniversary of Simon Bolivar's Angostura speech in southeastern Bolivar State, Maduro said: "The White House got into a dead end.the coup failed", referring to Washington's support for opposition leader Juan Guaido, who last month declared himself "acting president" of Venezuela.

Critics of Maduro say his re-election previous year was fraudulent, making the president's second term illegitimate.

"We paid for it with our own money because we're beggars to no one", he said.

Maduro says the 35-year-old National Assembly speaker is a puppet to the United States, which is trying to secure access to Venezuela's gold and vast oil reserves - the largest in the world. Caulfield also discussed President Trump's new sanctions against Maduro officials.

On Friday the US Treasury announced that it was imposing sanctions on five intelligence and security officials close to "former" President Maduro.

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