Tuesday February 19, 2019
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World can’t be only subject to US, West: Chinese daily

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Beijing: The world cannot be only subject to the US and the West, said a state-run Chinese daily which warned that “things will get tough if Washington suspects any organization that includes China and Russia”.

Global Times in an editorial “Anxiety over Ufa summits unnecessary” said that as no head of a Western state will attend the Ufa summits, “the West has again heightened its vigilance”.

BRICS and Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summits are being held from Wednesday to Friday in Ufa, Russia.

It said that the worries of the Western countries are all stereotypical.

“For instance, they think the Ufa summits indicate a confrontation with the West and consider China-Russia strategic cooperation as an alliance or axis. These appear to be stronger and more unequivocal as China, Russia and other BRICS countries take increasing shares of the world economy.”

The daily said that no one in the BRICS or the SCO will think their memberships mean there is no need to care about their relations with the West.

“The two organizations do not aim to confront the West. However, things will get tough if Washington suspects any organization that includes China and Russia, but excludes the US out of anti-West intentions. This logic means you must accept US leadership or be considered anti-West.”

The editorial said the US should be less stressed. “It is no longer a time when national security competition is omnipresent. Globalization and power shifts have also deeply affected economic competition. The world’s diversity today cannot be interpreted using old mentalities.”

It went on to say that BRICS countries are “not so ambitious as to wish to completely change the current international order, nor do they have the strength”.

“They actually hope to improve their position and treatment in the current order so as to achieve better development. This deserves some understanding from developed countries,” it added.

The editorial added that as countries turn pragmatic, “interest groups engaged in political, economic and military areas are always converted into a community of common interests”.

“The world cannot be only subject to the US and the West. China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative and Russia’s Eurasia Economic Union program cause no suspicion from Beijing and Moscow even though there is some overlap in Central Asia. But the US has felt alarm. This can only be attributed to its narrow-mindedness,” it said.

The daily said that the US and “its followers need not consider everything as a confrontation. With so many lessons in the 20th Century, in this century great powers should learn to get along more smartly”. (IANS)

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US Military Planes Deliver Aid to Venezuela-Colombia Border

The aid will be delivered to Cucuta, Colombia, where other food and medical supplies are being held.

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US, colombia, venezuela, military
FILE - Demonstrators who are against the Venezuelan government chant outside of the Organization of American States during the special meeting of the Permanent Council, in Washington, April 3, 2017, to consider the recent events in Venezuela. VOA

More than 200 tons of US humanitarian aid intended for Venezuela is scheduled to begin arriving just across the border in Colombia Saturday, delivered by US military cargo planes.

The aid will be delivered to Cucuta, Colombia, where other food and medical supplies are being held.

The aid comes at the request of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido to ease shortages of food and other essentials in economically troubled Venezuela.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has said the aid is part of Washington’s political maneuvering to get him out of office, and he has blocked off a bridge needed to bring the supplies into Venezuela.

The United States said Maduro’s election was unfair and illegitimate, and U.S. officials and scores of other nations have recognized his rival, Guaido, as the country’s interim leader.

US, Colombia, Venezuela
Sacks containing humanitarian aid are pictured at a warehouse near the Tienditas cross-border bridge between Colombia and Venezuela in Cucuta, Colombia, Feb. 14, 2019. VOA

Adding pressure

On Friday, Washington added to the political pressure on Maduro by sanctioning the head of Venezuela’s oil company as well as top intelligence officials.

Earlier Friday, Guiado’s representatives collected aid pledges from many nations at a meeting of the Organization of American States in Washington, where 25 countries promised more than $100 million in humanitarian aid to Venezuela.

“We came to ask for the solidarity of the governments of the world,” said Lester Toledo, coordinator for international help for Venezuela. “We appreciate the diplomatic gestures. We appreciate the letters and the recognition of President Guaidó. But we ask for help, to make the humanitarian aid a reality. That all donations can let us purchase medical supplies that we really need.”

Venezuela, US, Colombia
If the aid does arrive in Venezuela, organizations like the Red Cross will help distribute the supplies with “neutral and independent” conditions, Mario Villarroel, president of Venezuela’s Red Cross, said. Pixabay

Distributing the aid

U.S. Ambassador to the Organization of American States Carlos Trujillo said Guaidó has a plan.

“I believe that President Guaidó has done everything possible to make Maduro accept the humanitarian aid. Maduro has no argument, the person sitting in power doesn’t let the humanitarian aid reach his people who are dying of hunger,” Trujillo said.

Guaido said the aid will be brought into Venezuela Feb. 23.

Maduro, however, said the aid will not be brought into his nation, and he blames U.S. economic sanctions for Venezuela’s problems.

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“They’re putting pressure on Venezuela’s banks, which are in charge of purchasing and bringing the food and supplies. The White House is pressuring so that none of our bank accounts work. They have frozen billions of dollars that could otherwise buy food and medicine,” he claimed.

If the aid does arrive in Venezuela, organizations like the Red Cross will help distribute the supplies with “neutral and independent” conditions, Mario Villarroel, president of Venezuela’s Red Cross, said.

“We have the necessary experience, we know it is a very complex issue, but we will do our best to coordinate the distribution and organization of this humanitarian aid,” he said. (VOA)