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US to experience ‘15 Vietnams’ in potential war with Venezuela: FM

The Venezuelan foreign minister says the United States, which has threatened Venezuela with military action, would experience 15 times as many difficulties as it suffered in the Vietnam War.

According to reports, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza suggested on Saturday that the US would deeply regret any such action.

“Threatening our country, our people, our Latin America, our Caribbean, with a military intervention, is not only unprecedented and unusual, but deeply hostile, disrespectful, condemnable, abject,” Arreaza said.

The US would experience “15 Vietnams” if it were to wage war on Venezuela, he warned.

Also on Saturday, Latin American countries often critical of Venezuela rejected the US’s threat to use force against the conflict-hit country.

“The only acceptable means of promoting democracy are dialog and diplomacy,” the South American trade bloc Mercosur said in a statement on Saturday.

The bloc, which consists of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay, added, “The repudiation of violence and any option that implies the use of force is inalienable and constitutes the fundamental basis for democratic coexistence.”

Other South American countries, such as Peru, Mexico, and Colombia, also joined the chorus of Latin American unity against the US with statements of their own, criticizing Washington’s threat of military action against Caracas as a move against the United Nations’ principles.

Senior Venezuelan officials have also responded to Trump’s threat. Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino denounced the threat as “an act of craziness,” and Communications Minister Ernesto Villegas described it as “an unprecedented threat to national sovereignty.”

Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza also has rejected the threat as “hostile,” and called on Latin America to unite against Washington.

“The reckless threat by President Trump aims to drag Latin America and the Caribbean into a conflict that would permanently alter stability, peace, and security in our region,” he said.

Trump’s threat came as the oil-rich but impoverished country has been convulsed by months of deadly protests against the government in Caracas.