CARACAS, March 6 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela asked the Panamanian ambassador to leave the country within 48 hours Thursday after it severed ties with Panama for attempting to interfere in Venezuela's internal affairs.
Ambassador Pedro Pereira and the three embassy staff members were declared "personae non gratae" and given 48 hours to leave Venezuela, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
President Nicolas Maduro said Wednesday that Venezuela was breaking off diplomatic ties with Panama after Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli called an urgent meeting of the Organization of American States (OAS) over the political turmoil in Venezuela.
Two people were killed in a Caracas neighborhood Thursday, bringing the death toll to at least 20 in the month-long anti-government protests.
It was the second time that foreign diplomats were expelled from the country since street protests erupted on Feb. 12.
Last month, Venezuela expelled three U.S. diplomats accused of conspiring with the opposition. Washington denied the charge and expelled three Venezuelan diplomats in retaliation.
Venezuela expels Panamanian ambassador after severing ties
CARACAS, March 6 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela asked the Panamanian ambassador and three other diplomats to leave the country within 48 hours Thursday after it severed ties with Panama for attempting to interfere militarily in Venezuela's internal affairs. Full story
Venezuela breaks ties with Panama
CARACAS, March 5 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro Wednesday announced his decision to break diplomatic and trade ties with Panama, the Venezuelan News Agency (AVN) reported.
Earlier in the day, Maduro had denounced Panama for taking part in a U.S.-led attempt to "interfere" militarily in Venezuela to carry out regime change.Full story
Venezuela rejects OAS interference
CARACAS, March 5 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro Wednesday dismissed as "interference" a request by the Organization of American States (OAS) to hold talks on the political turmoil roiling the South American country.
The bid to discuss Venezuela's internal crisis at the Permanent Council of the OAS is simply a move to "interfere," said Maduro, adding he will respond to any "attack" on national sovereignty.Full story