Venezuela

Venezuela, along with Argentina, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua and Bolivia, criticised the final declaration of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Summit in Rome on June 5, arguing that the document failed
to identify the true causes of rising food prices, such as agricultural subsidies and unequal trade policies imposed by developed countries.

“Once they got their wages, [the workers] occupied the installations and demanded that the company go, then they occupied the offices and demanded that the administration of Sincreba [Merida Waste Incineration and Recycling System] retire”, Simon Rodriguez told Green Left Weekly on the peaceful take-over by its workers of the Solid Waste Processing Plant in Merida in September last year.

In a massive show of support for the new United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) — established to unite the mass movement that supports the Bolivarian revolution led by President Hugo Chavez — on June 1 some 2.5 million PSUV members participated in an historic process of electing candidates for the upcoming regional elections in November.

Below is an abridged statement by the US-based Venezuelan Information Office. Visit http://rethinkvenezuela.com.

Following the December 2 constitutional reform referendum defeat — the first for the forces of the Bolivarian revolution since the election of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in 1998 — and facing popular discontent at the problems holding back the advance of the process of change, the pro-revolution forces face a big challenge in securing an overwhelming victory in the November regional elections in order not to lose ground to the US-backed opposition.

On March 1, the Colombian military (with US Special Forces help) illegally attacked a Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC-EP) rebel camp inside Ecuador.

According to a May 19 report by Latin American TV station Telesur, Venezuela’s defence minister Gustavo Rangel Briceno, denounced the fact that a US fighter jet violated Venezuelan airspace — around the La Orchila island, which houses a Venezuelan military base — two days earlier.

Reuters reported on May 16 that Venezuela had "shut the door to new gold projects and threatened other mining and logging concessions". Environment minister Yuviri Ortega said Venezuela will "deny environmental permits" for any open-pit mines and

“The workers feel that what we achieved was a great triumph”, said Jose Melendez, the finance secretary for the United Steel Industry Workers’ Union (SUTISS), on the signing of a new contract for the Sidor steel plant’s workforce with the Venezuelan government, according to a May 6 Venezuelanalysis.com article.

On live TV, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez signed the law on April 30 that re-nationalised the giant Sidor steelworks — majority owned by Argentinean-based Ternium corporation.

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