BEIRUT, LEBANON (12:00 P.M.) – Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro has expressed his willingness to meet U.S. President Donald Trump, noting that any conversation between them should be based on respect.

“As I met Joe Biden, we talked long with a spirit of respect … I am ready to speak with U.S. President Donald Trump with respect when it is necessary,” Maduro told the Venezuelan AVN news agency.

The Venezuelan president met US Vice President Joe Biden in 2015.

Maduro made the remarks, commenting on U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement that he was ready to meet Maduro to discuss “giving up power in a peaceful manner.”

It is noteworthy that the United States does not consider Maduro a legitimate president of Venezuela, and accused him of involvement in the drug trade, and imposed sanctions on him and a number of senior Venezuelan officials and government agencies and companies.

Venezuela cut ties with the United States in January 2019, following Washington’s recognition of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as “interim president” of the country.

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