Alleged US 'mercenary' held in Venezuela

2012-08-10 22:29
Hugo Chavez. (AFP)

Hugo Chavez. (AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

  • Venezuela
    This book explores the state of Venezuelan politics and relations with the United States. Now R1,827.00
    buy now
Caracas - President Hugo Chavez said Venezuelan authorities have detained a US citizen and are interrogating him, suspecting he could be a "mercenary" plotting to destabilise the country if the opposition loses the upcoming presidential election.

Chavez did not identify the man on Thursday night nor detail the accusations against him. But the case has the potential to ratchet up longstanding tensions between Venezuela and the US less than two months ahead of Venezuela's presidential election.

Chavez said the Hispanic man was detained on 4 August while crossing into Venezuela from Colombia. He said the man was carrying a US passport with entrance and exit stamps from countries including Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya.

A US state department official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorised to speak publicly, said the US government as of Friday morning had not been notified of the arrest by the Venezuelan government.

He said that if the detained man is in fact a US citizen, American officials expect "Venezuela will uphold its obligations under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and grant US consular officials access to any detained US citizen without delay".

Opposition lawmaker Pedro Pablo Alcantara scoffed at the president's allegations that government foes would attempt to stir up trouble if Chavez is re-elected to a new six-year term.

Alcantara accused the government of encouraging violence against its adversaries in the past while backing groups that have attacked opposition marches.

"It's the president who has promoted violence," he said.

Chavez has repeatedly accused the US government of plotting against him during the past decade, though he usually has provided few specifics of such claims.

"He has all the appearance of a mercenary," Chavez said of the detained man, speaking during a campaign rally in the coastal state of Vargas on Thursday. "We are interrogating him."

The man tore up part of a notebook in his possession when he was detained, Chavez said.

Chavez suggested, without offering evidence, the American might have been recruited by government opponents to instigate violent protests if opposition presidential candidate Henrique Capriles loses the 7 October election.

- SAPA
Read more on:    venezuela  |  security
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
8 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Sport

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

ONE DAY ONLY – 50% off 1000’s of toys

Get 50% of 1000’s off toys! Offer valid on selected toys. Shop now! T&C’s apply

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at kalahari.com

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Mind power dominates and can help you to uncover things from a deeper level, but it can also create entanglements if you let your...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.