[Marxism] Venezuela to seek legal action against Robertson

Calvin Broadbent calvinbroadbent at hotmail.com
Tue Aug 30 04:27:17 MDT 2005


Venezuela to seek legal action against Robertson

Reuters | August 29 2005

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said on Sunday his government would take 
legal action against Pat Robertson and potentially seek his extradition 
after the U.S. evangelist called for Washington to assassinate the South 
American leader.

Robertson, who later apologized for the remark, said he was expressing his 
frustration with Chavez's constant accusations against the administration of 
President George W. Bush.

"I announce that my government is going to take legal action in the United 
States ... to call for the assassination of a head of state is an act of 
terrorism." Chavez said in a televised speech.

The fiery left-wing critic of Bush's foreign policy who frequently charges 
the U.S. government is plotting to kill him, called Robertson "crazy" and a 
"public menace."

He said Venezuela could seek Robertson's extradition under international 
treaties and take its claim to the United Nations if the Bush administration 
did not act.

Robertson, the founder of the Christian Coalition and a leader of the 
Christian right that has backed Bush, said on Monday that if Chavez "thinks 
we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead 
and do it."

U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said political assassination was 
against the law and was not U.S. policy.

Relations between Chavez and the United States, the top buyer of the OPEC 
nation's oil, have deteriorated since Chavez survived a brief 2002 coup he 
says was backed by U.S. authorities. Washington says it is not plotting to 
kill Chavez and denies involvement in the coup.

Chavez said on Friday Bush would be to blame if anything happened to him. In 
the past, he has said Venezuela, the world's fifth-largest oil exporter, 
would cut sales to the United States if he was assassinated.

A close ally of communist Cuba, Chavez presents his self-proclaimed 
revolution as an alternative to U.S. policies in the region.

Washington says Chavez is a negative influence who uses oil profits to fund 
anti-democratic groups in South America while becoming more authoritarian at 
home.

U.S. civil rights activist Jesse Jackson, visiting Venezuela on Sunday, 
called Robertson's remarks "immoral" and rejected U.S. government claims 
against Chavez. (Additional reporting by Tomas Sarmiento)

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