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25 Feb, 2019 23:41

Not a back door for US troops: Brazil says it won’t help Venezuela invasion

Not a back door for US troops: Brazil says it won’t help Venezuela invasion

The Brazilian vice president has said there is no chance his country would allow the US military to use its territory to invade neighboring Venezuela. The vow comes after Washington said it’s keeping “all options” on the table.

Asked in an interview if Brazil was considering letting US troops into its territory for a potential invasion of Venezuela, Vice President Hamilton Mourão flatly rejected such a possibility on Monday.

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"Brazil does not consider this at all," Mourão told to Brazil's GloboNews TV on the sidelines of the Lima Group meeting in Colombia. Mourão also explained that the government of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who has repeatedly berated Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro as a “dictator,” could not single-handedly greenlight the deployment of US forces.

“You have to always remember that any presence of a foreign force in our country has to have authorization from the National Congress, the government cannot simply do this,” Mourão noted.

The Brazilian VP doubled down on the issue on social media, tweeting that the deputies have “no intention” of backing such a militaristic move.

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He stressed that Brazil believes in non-military ways of resolving the crisis, which include applying international diplomatic and economic pressure but “no adventures.”

Brazil, like the majority of countries in the region, has recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as the interim president of Venezuela. The two countries, once close allies, have fallen out sharply since the election of the right-wing Bolsonaro, who has been courting Washington and has even suggested hosting a US base on Brazilian territory.

Ahead of the Monday’s meeting of the Lima Group, an alliance of 14, mostly Latin American, countries, the Brazilian Foreign Ministry urged states that have not recognized Guaido “to join in the liberation effort of Venezuela.”

Tensions between Brazil and Venezuela flared up over the weekend as Venezuelan security forces blocked trucks with humanitarian aid from crossing into the country from the Brazilian city of Pacaraima. The botched aid delivery was marred by violence and drew stark condemnation from the Brazilian authorities, that labeled it “the acts of violence perpetrated by the illegitimate regime of dictator Nicolás Maduro.” Violence also erupted at Venezuela’s border with Colombia, where the US-backed aid convoys were likewise forced to turn back. Caracas sees the deliveries as a pretext for a potential military invasion and has vowed to not let the aid into the country.

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