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USA vs. Venezuela and other events eclipsed by the coronavirus

Trump's accusation of Maduro and the plight of thousands of migrants in Turkey are some of the events that happen while the focus is on COVID-19

Donald Trump and Nicolás Maduro.

Several events have been overshadowed by the coronavirus crisis. / Photos: Reuters

LatinAmerican Post | Juliana Suárez

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Leer en español: Estados Unidos vs. Venezuela y 3 hechos más eclipsados por el coronavirus

Despite the fact that the majority of the world population is in isolation measures to prevent the spread of the virus, the world continues to move. And in case you have missed these events because you are focused on your quarantine and the news about the coronavirus, here we bring you some of the most important ones that have occurred in these times of health emergency.

United States vs Venezuela

The United States has been a harsh critic of Nicolás Maduro and took advantage of last week to once again attack him. This time the attorney general accused him of having ties to drug trafficking and filed charges against him for money laundering.

According to the accusations, Maduro has led the Cartes de 'Los Soles', which has carried out narcoterrorist actions since 1999, the accusation also includes Venezuelan authorities and members of the extinct Colombian guerrilla, the FARC,  and their former leaders Iván Márquez and Jesus Santrich. The plan of this cartel, which the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez is also accused of being a member of, was to "flood the United States with cocaine to undermine the health and well-being of our country," said Geoffrey Berman, prosecutor for the southern district of New York, according to the BBC.

After these accusations and their denial by Maduro, the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, referred to the importance of elections in Venezuela in which neither Nicolás Maduro nor Juan Guaidó, the interim president, participate. The proposal is to establish an external transitional government that is headed by a State Council and which is responsible for organizing the next elections.

While the Venezuelan president has asked for the support of world presidents in what he described as an "unusual and arbitrary persecution" by the United States, Donald Trump announced the deployment of military troops in the Caribbean as a threat against the Latin American country. This decision seeks to put pressure on Maduro in an anti-narcotics operation.

 

Calvary of migrants

Hundreds of Syrian migrants have been on the Greek-Turkish border since February, waiting to enter the European Union and apply for asylum. The announcement of the opening of the Turkish border to the EU was good news for these migrants who, in the end, ended up trapped in shelters in Turkey due to difficulties in crossing, which increased with the quarantine due to the coronavirus.

After a month of staying in these shelters, the migrants left the camp assuring that they would not wait any longer and returned to other shelters in different regions of Turkey. This would once again mean the movement of refugees across Turkey, a situation that the Recep Tayyip Erdogan government was trying to prevent by opening the way to the EU.

Also read: Political war and 3 other consequences of the Coronavirus

Meanwhile, a video was denounced of a fire in the border camp where a Syrian refugee claimed that "the Turkish military is burning the shops to force people to leave the place," according to El Tiempo. The video would question whether the migrants' decision to leave the camp was really their own.

End of dialogues?

The week began with statements by North Korea threatening to end the dialogues that have been taking place with the United States for several months. This came after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had urged the international community to "remain committed to applying diplomatic and economic pressure."

The Korean authorities claimed that the statement removed any possibility of dialogue and called it "ridiculous". Meanwhile, the United States came to that position after North Korea's latest rocket launches. 

Confusion over explosion in Nigeria

On March 27, an explosion in Akure, Nigeria affected at least 100 buildings, including houses, and created a 21 meters hole that is 7.8 meters deep. The event caused commotion due to the impact and because several people who were in a church would be injured, leaving a total of 11 of whom six were discharged.

Initially, it was thought that the incident involved an asteroid because of the hole that was left, although there was no indication of the rock. However, after authorities confirmed that they had an incident involving a car that carried explosives to a storage facility. According to the governor of Ondo, the vehicle had failed along the way and that despite trying to contain the fire, the massive outbreak occurred.

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