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Time for military threats against independent states over: Iran

The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman says the time for using military threats and pressure against independent countries as a weapon has come to an end.

According to Press TV, Bahram Qassemi said on Sunday “As global experience and contemporary political history have proved, the time for using military threats and pressure as a weapon against independent countries in order to force them to accept irrational and illegitimate demands is over.”

He strongly condemned the recent “provocative and meddlesome” remarks by US President Donald Trump about domestic developments in Venezuela and his suggestion of using the “military option” to resolve the country’s political crisis.

Qassemi expressed Iran’s opposition to any foreign intervention in Venezuela’s internal affairs and stressed the importance of respecting the sovereignty and independence of countries in line with international law.

Speaking to reporters in New Jersey on Friday, Trump said all options remained on the table – including potential military intervention – regarding the unrest in Venezuela.

“We have many options for Venezuela and by the way, I’m not going to rule out a military option,” the US president said, adding, “A military operation is certainly something that we could pursue.”

Venezuela’s Defense Minister General Vladimir Padrino later on Friday denounced Trump’s “crazy” threat of military action amid escalating bilateral tensions over what Caracas views as Washington’s meddling in the Latin American country’s political crisis.

“This is an act of craziness, an act of supreme extremism,” Padrino said in an interview with the state television.

Venezuela has been convulsed by months-long deadly protests against the government.

The political tensions there have seen a rise after Venezuelan people said ‘Yes’ in an election last week to the formation of a National Assembly tasked with dissolving the opposition-led congress and rewriting the constitution. The vote was boycotted by the opposition.

Siding with the opposition, Washington blames Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro for the violence and has urged regional and international governments to take strong action against his government. Maduro, however, says the US and its allies in the region are inciting the violence to bring down his government.

The United States imposed sanctions against 13 current and former Venezuelan officials after doing the same to the country’s vice president in February. The US Treasury Department later froze Maduro’s US assets and called him a “dictator” for pushing ahead with the election.

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