A furious Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said on Monday U.S. sanction measures were intended to topple his socialist government.

“President Barack Obama, representing the U.S. imperialist elite, has personally decided to take on the task of defeating my government and intervening in Venezuela to control it,” Maduro said in a national TV address.

“That’s why they have taken today’s measure,” the president said in his first reaction to the U.S. sanctions against seven Venezuela officials. The United States also declared that the South American nation represents a national security threat.

Maduro said he would ask parliament for decree powers to “preserve peace” and “fight imperialism” after Washington declared Venezuela a national security threat and sanctioned seven officials.

Maduro, 52, said he would ask the National Assembly, controlled by the ruling Socialist Party, to grant him the special powers – for the second time in his nearly two-year rule – through a so-called Enabling Law.

 

AFP

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