On Sunday, the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela , Nicolas Maduro, called for a defense of the country against attacks from the far right and assured that the Government, under his leadership, will continue to ensure national peace.
\"I know that you are a people of peace. I ask Venezuelans to have confidence in the country and in me. I will take and correctly lead you on the path of peace, of a sovereign country,\" he said on a national broadcasting from Miraflores Palace, where senior citizens gathered after a march for peace and against the violent actions perpetrated by the Venezuelan right-wing .
During his speech, the President made it clear that \"we will defend this sacred land , the land of Bolivar and other Liberators.\"
He also demanded the cessation of violent protests and terrorist actions perpetrated by violent groups as of February 12th, which, to date, have left at least 9 dead and 137 injured in the country, as well as damage to public and private institutions.
The President urged fascist groups seeking to destabilize the country to stop their irrational behavior and respect the Constitution and laws. \"Venezuela has a Constitution and this Constitution is very clear. A group cannot burn the country, we will not accept that,\" he insisted.
The Venezuelan leader reiterated that the \"in the world there is a campaign against Venezuela to justify foreign military intervention.\"
In this regard, in a Sunday interview with Telesur, he denounced the fact that a visitor tried to enter the cell where Leopoldo López is being held, to give him maps of oil facilities in the country for the purpose of causing further destabilization.
The maps were confiscated “from a person who was visiting Mr. Leopoldo López, who was trying to bring them into the extreme right-wing leader’s cell. The maps were of the entire petroleum industry : oil and gas pipelines, refineries, oil fields, and the Orinoco Oil Belt,\" he said.
Maduro gave this information to Rafael Ramirez, president of Petroleos de Venezuela (Venezuela’s state oil company), and requested he reinforce security measures in those spaces.
The President also said that security forces are evaluating these maps, because of concerns over attempts to destabilize the Venezuelan oil industry .
“They continue with this coup, and we maintain our policy of mobilizing the people, to do justice, to govern, and in this way , to defeat them. We have not beaten them yet. Nobody should be fooled; we have neutralized, minimized [them], we have isolated violent people,\" Maduro said.
AVN / Telesur / Press-Venezuelan Embassy to the U.S. / February 24 , 2014