Venezuela

Jonathan Clay / US Navy

A U.S. Navy hospital ship leaves Norfolk, Virginia, Thursday on a mission that means a lot to people here in South Florida. It hopes to help bring relief to the worst migrant refugee crisis in modern South American history.

Five South American countries and Canada have asked the International Criminal Court, a Netherlands-based tribunal, to place Venezuela under investigation for crimes against humanity. This is the first time a country has been referred to the ICC for investigation by an outside state. Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Peru, Paraguay and Canada submitted their request on Wednesday to the court.

Nora Gámez Torres / El Nuevo Herald

Cuba’s Miguel Díaz-Canel and Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro addressed a group of sympathizers at the Riverside Church in New York but only after some journalists from U.S. and Spanish news outlets were kicked out of the event.

“This is a solidarity gathering … so there’s no need to talk about names or titles. Here we are all brothers and sisters,” Díaz-Canel said at the Wednesday night gathering, according to videos that circulated across social media and other outlets.

Under pressure at home and abroad, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro on Wednesday used one of the world’s most prominent podiums to accuse the United States and its allies of trying to assassinate him to end his “socialist revolution” and seize Venezuela’s vast oil and mineral wealth.

Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly, Maduro said Washington was scared of Venezuela’s autonomy and independence and determined to stop it all costs.

Ariana Cubillos / File AP Photo

BOGOTA, COLOMBIA: Cilia Flores, the wife of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, was sanctioned Tuesday by the U.S. Treasury Department, in what it called a crack-down on Maduro’s “inner circle” of corruption.

Also named were Minister of Defense Padrino Lopez, Vice President Delcy Rodríguez and Communications Minister Jorge Rodríguez.

via Miami Herald

First the chef known as Salt Bae riled Cuban Americans by dressing up in honor of the late dictator Fidel Castro.

Now Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe, the man who became a meme by sprinkling salt over manhandled meat, has incensed the internet again, this time by hosting Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro as that country grapples with widespread food scarcity.

Guillermo does not exist — on social media at least. He has a Facebook account, but he doesn't publicly use his real name. He doesn't have a profile picture, doesn't show his location, and never posts a single thing. He mostly logs in to read about sports.

Guillermo asked that his last name be withheld — he worries about his family. They still live in Venezuela. Amid political and economic chaos, over a million Venezuelans have left the country in the last two years.

Ariana Cubillos / AP via Miami Herald

Over the weekend the New York Times created hemispheric buzz. It reported that U.S. officials talked privately this past year with rebellious Venezuelan military officers. Those officers wanted U.S. help to overthrow Venezuela’s socialist president, Nicolás Maduro.

Apparently nothing came of the talks; the Trump Administration declined to help the rogue militares. But the Times story was more evidence that President Trump is exploring unusually strong action to topple Maduro. At the White House last summer, he'd already displayed that impulse.

“We have many options for Venezuela," Trump said then, "including a possible military option if necessary…”

Fernando Vergara / AP

The mass exodus from Venezuela is being called one of the worst humanitarian emergencies in Latin America’s history. On Thursday a prominent human rights group came to Miami to urge Latin America to forge a more unified response to the crisis – and its cause.

Brazilian President Michel Temer signed a decree Tuesday to send troops to the country's northern state of Roraima, where Venezuelans fleeing food shortages have streamed across the border.

The armed forces will have police powers on the borders and highways in Roraima, the Brazilian government said.

David Ovalle / Miami Herald

Violence and instability continue in Venezuela and many have left the country to escape a collapsing economy, seeking asylum overseas.  

Manuel Rueda

Last week José Molleja became one of the countless Venezuelans stranded on the border between Colombia and Ecuador.

The 22-year-old Venezuelan can’t find enough work to live in crisis-torn Venezuela. So he spent a week on a bus getting from Caracas to join relatives who’d already emigrated to Ecuador.

But when Molleja arrived he was stunned. Before, Ecuador had only asked Venezuelans to show a photo ID to enter the country. Now the country was suddenly making them present passports.

This week the U.S. froze assets in South Florida worth hundreds of millions of dollars. They belong to people charged with embezzling and laundering Venezuelan oil money. South Florida bankers are getting tuned in to this Venezuelan problem.

U.S. Geological Service

A powerful earthquake shook Venezuela's northeastern coast on Tuesday, forcing residents in the capital to evacuate buildings and interrupting a pro-government rally in support of controversial economic reforms.

The 7.3 quake was the largest to strike Venezuela since 1900, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. But at a depth of some 76 miles (123 kilometers) it appeared to have caused only limited damage even near its epicenter a few miles off the sparsely populated Cariaco peninsula stretching into the eastern Caribbean.

Venezuelan refugees continue to flee across the border by the thousands each day, and are increasingly facing protests and attacks in neighboring countries. Over the weekend mobs torched refugee camps in a border town of northern Brazil.

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