Chavez says Latin America faces US threat

Caracas, Nov 23 (EFE) Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has said the conciliatory discourse of his US counterpart, Barack Obama, has been just “a big story” and that an “imperial counterattack” is under way against Latin American development.

“And Venezuela is the No.1 target on the imperial map on this continent” because the country “is the epicentre… (of the) socialist, revolutionary” current that has arisen in Latin America, Chavez said in an address Saturday to members of his United Socialist Party of Venezuela, or PSUV.

The president once again cited as examples of the “imperialist counterattack” in the region the coup in Honduras and the military accord signed between Bogota and Washington allowing US troops to use seven Colombian bases.

The agreement is a “threat” to the Bolivarian and socialist “revolution,” and it forms part of Washington’s alleged plan to mount “an attack on Venezuela” using Colombia as a “stepping stone”, Chavez said.

The Venezuelan leader said that a “big media operation” had been launched to present him as “the one who is preparing a war” when “Venezuela is the attacked one” in Washington’s plans.

“We’re the ones being attacked… but there’s an imperial counterattack that in some cases manifests itself openly as in Colombia and Honduras,” Chavez said.

The president has said on several occasions, the most recent of them being Nov 13, that Washington “is behind the coup in Honduras and… is proving it” when the “US ambassador… (said) the next government will have to be recognized” after the Nov 29 election.