U.S.-sanctioned Venezuelan defects to Colombia, slams Maduro

March 19, 2019 05:28
1 minute read.
Breaking news

Breaking news. (photo credit: JPOST STAFF)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


March 18 - A Venezuelan general under sanction by the United States denounced the government of President Nicolas Maduro on Monday as "inept and corrupt" after fleeing for neighboring Colombia amid growing pressure on the isolated administration.

The United States in 2018 sanctioned army General Carlos Rotondaro, former head of a state agency that provided medicine for chronic health conditions, as part of efforts to "highlight the economic mismanagement and endemic corruption" by Maduro's government.

"I'm not a traitor, I'm loyal to fatherland," Rotondaro said in an interview with Colombian news station NTN24. "My oath (of military service) did not include defending a corrupt and inept government."

Rotondaro said he had to leave Venezuela via illegal border crossings because his passport had been canceled.

Venezuela's Information Ministry did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

Since January, hundreds of Venezuelan military officers have deserted to seek refuge in Colombia and have disavowed Maduro's government in favor of Juan Guaido, whom the opposition-run congress designated president in January.

Rotondaro said he recognized Guaido as the country's legitimate leader. "The population is clamoring for a change through free and fair elections," he said.

High-ranking military officers are seen as crucial to keeping Maduro in power in the face of a hyperinflationary economic collapse that has fueled hunger and preventable disease and led to an exodus of some 3 million people since 2015.

The Venezuelan Social Security Institute for years imported and distributed medication for diseases such as cancer at no cost to patients. But amid the country's economic crisis, it ran up huge debts with pharmaceutical companies and was unable to continue delivering medicine, leaving millions unable to obtain treatment for chronic diseases.

Maduro says the country is victim of an "economic war" led by political adversaries with the help of the United States. Most Western nations have disavowed his government in favor of Guaido.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Breaking news
July 17, 2019
Palestinian report: Powerful explosion heard on Gaza border


Cookie Settings