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Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela - Ministry of People's Power of Foreign Affairs - Statement

The Ministry of People's Power of Foreign Affairs rejects in the strongest terms possible the comments made on February 4 by the new U.S. Ambassador to Brazil, Thomas Shannon.

Mr. Shannon's comments are unacceptable for being invasive and disrespectful. It is not the role of a diplomat, much less a diplomat accredited to a friendly country, to give advice to a sovereign government. These comments represent a new and indefensible level of involvement of his government in the internal matters of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

Ambassador Shannon should dedicate himself to his mission of promoting relations between the U.S. and Brazil and not use Brazilian territory to act against or intervene in Venezuela's internal affairs.

The former Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs and current Ambassador of the U.S. to Brazil is taking part in and providing evidence of the coordination between powerful sectors of his country and traditional power holders of our country in a campaign aimed at generating instability in Venezuela with undemocratic ends in mind.

Additionally, he cannot pretend to give lessons on democracy to a country that has held more than 10 national elections since 1999 and will hold another important election in September 2010 in which all political actors can participate and exercise their democratic rights. In the coming months the Venezuelan people will be able to judge the different political forces and freely express their choices through the ballot box. During these political campaigns, all political actors will have the ability to campaign freely and without limitations spare those written in law, and express their ideas and programs as is allowed under the provisions of the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and guaranteed by the national government.

Venezuelan democracy is more alive than ever, and the Venezuelan people chart their destiny through the innovative development of a system of participatory democracy, one which promotes inclusion and social justice. It is on this path that the imperial powers and their lackeys seek to interfere with Venezuela.

Caracas, February 5, 2010

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