“This is shameful, painful,” Moncada said. “Is it that the lives of innocent civilians in the center of Caracas don’t matter to them?”
Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Samuel Moncada said Tuesday’s attack on the capital was an “act of terrorism” and criticized North American, European and Latin American countries for failing to condemn it.
Moncada told a news conference in Caracas that a man hijacked a helicopter and flew over the Interior Ministry during an event with reporters for the National Day of the Journalist of some 80 people. The pilot then targeted the Supreme Court offices throwing four grenades at the building, one of which did not detonate.
Moncada called the assailant identified as Oscar Alberto Perez, a “psychopath” who declared himself a “Warrior of God” in an Instagram message recorded before the attacks.
In the video, Perez, a pilot from the Venezuela’s Scientific, Penal and Criminal Investigations police agency, claims to represent a group of military and other officials committed to toppling the government of President Nicolas Maduro.
The new foreign minister said that international press agencies have called the attacker a “Rambo-type figure who escaped in a helicopter to fight for freedom,” adding that in any other part of the world the act would have been labeled terrorism.
“This warrior of God in any country would be a terrorist, he is a murderer, he had the intention to kill, he doesn’t defend the innocent people in Venezuela.”
Meanwhile, Venezuelan Vice President Tarek El Aissami announced that the stolen helicopter had been found by the armed forces in the northern coastal state of Vargas Wednesday, adding that no people were detained.
El Aissami said that the search for terrorist Oscar Perez continues, stressing that they will continue “deploying special forces to determine if any other actions were planned” and asked the people of Vargas for support in identifying any “irregular activities in these communities.”
Moncada also criticized what he called the “double standards” of countries and institutions — specifically naming the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Argentina, as well as the Organization of American States — for issuing statements claiming to be worried about human rights in the country, but not condemning a terrorist attack.
“This is shameful, painful,” Moncada said. “Is it that the lives of innocent civilians in the center of Caracas don’t matter to them? They don’t care about Venezuelans.”
“That is the war against Venezuela,” Moncada said. “They want to take us to war with mad acts like this. They want to glorify them, this is unacceptable.”
Moncada recognized Ecuador, Bolivia, Cuba, Palestine, Turkey as well as “dozens of social movements” for condemning the attack.
On Tuesday, Maduro said Perez worked for Miguel Rodriguez Torres, the former Venezuelan general who is being investigated for alleged ties to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.
The foreign minister also criticized opposition leaders for failing to condemn the attack, particularly Henry Ramos Allup, who took to Twitter to say the helicopter attack was pointless. “Pointless? It almost seems like he’s condemning it because it didn’t have the effect they wanted, because it didn’t kill any people,” Moncada said.
He called on people to vote in the National Constituent Assembly elections on July 30 “to resolve this peacefully and democratically, no psychopath can stop that, no foreign power can stop that.”
Moncada also said the Venezuelan authorities will find those responsible and warned other terrorist cells could be still active in the country.
teleSUR / cg-CL-RT-mk, teleSUR
June 28, 2017