Vice President Mike Pence arrived at Colombia’s capital city, Bogotá, to address the Venezuela crisis on Monday, Feb. 25. Pence said interim Venezuelan President Juan Guaido has the full support of the United States.
Pence also announced new sanctions on Venezuela’s illegitimate socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro and his allies.
After arriving in Bogotá, Pence met with Guaido and Colombia President Ivan Duque Marquez at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Colombia. He then spoke at a press conference, delivering President Trump’s message to Guaido and people of Venezuela.
Pence said: “First, we call on all Lima Group nations to immediately freeze the assets of PDVSA. Second, we urge you to transfer ownership of Venezuelan assets in your country from Maduro’s henchmen to President Guaido’s government.”
U.S.-backed foreign aid has been blocked from entering Venezuela due to Maduro’s troops. Pence announced that the United States will provide an additional $56 million in support to regions surrounding Venezuela, to aid people fleeing from the country.
The U.S department of state also took action against four governors aligned with the Maduro regime who prevented international humanitarian assistance.
Read full story
Trump Departs for Talks with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un
A lot has happened since last June when President Trump met with North Korea’s leader. There have been no new missile tests. Three U.S. prisoners have been released and the remains of American soldiers have been returned. Now, Trump is returning to the table to get North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons.
President Trump is on his way to Vietnam today for his second meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
President Trump said on Feb. 25 during the 2019 White House Business Session with Nation’s Governors: “It is going to be a very good meeting. We’ve really established a very good relationship.”
It’s been eight and a half months since they last met. Since then, the personal relationship between the two leaders has become closer, with Trump tweeting earlier this month, “I have gotten to know him and fully understand how capable he is.”
North Korea, under the leadership of Kim Jong Un, will become a great Economic Powerhouse. He may surprise some but he won’t surprise me, because I have gotten to know him & fully understand how capable he is. North Korea will become a different kind of Rocket – an Economic one!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 9, 2019
It’s an unlikely bond, but the Trump administration attributes the gains in international security to a combination of tough sanctions on North Korea and Trump’s personal relationship.
Trump has been firm that no U.S. troops will leave South Korea until North Korea denuclearizes. If North Korea doesn’t, the White House has said that the sanctions will continue. And if it does get rid of its nuclear weapons, Trump has made the pitch that North Korea could become an economic powerhouse.
President Trump said: “And I say, ‘You have one of the greatest locations.’ They have incredible people. Hard working people. Smart, energetic. And I think it can be, really, one of the great—one of the great financial and economic countries anywhere in the world. So I tell him that. I said, ‘But you can’t do that if you’re going to keep nuclear. If you do nuclear, that can’t ever happen.'”
Trump Delays Increase in Tariffs on Chinese Goods
Trump had originally scheduled to increase tariffs to 25 percent from 10 percent on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports on March 1.
But in a tweet posted on Feb. 24, Trump said that substantial progress has been made on many areas, including intellectual property protection, technology transfers, agriculture, services, and currency.
On Feb. 25, Trump announced that a signing summit was around the corner for a trade deal with China. He is optimistic that he will reach a deal with Chinese leader Xi Jinping.
Trump said: “I told you how well we did with our trade talks in China and it looks like they’ll be coming back quickly again.
“We’re going to have a signing summit … So hopefully we can get that completed but we’re getting very, very close.”
The delay in tariffs was a major sign of a breakthrough following the 90-day truce in the trade war, which started last year.
Read full story