“WE must defend the right to make revolution,” President Nicolas Maduro told a rally of military and civilian supporters on Wednesday to mark the country’s Dignity Day.
The day marks the 23rd anniversary of the popular uprising led by the late Hugo Chavez which Mr Maduro called “an act of rebellion against domination.”
He drew links between the events of 1992 and the Caracazo, the spontaneous uprising against neoliberal policies that happened three years earlier and was drowned in blood by the US-backed government.
Mr Maduro rejected current US allegations that his government is perpetrating state violence against its opponents, declaring: “The US empire tries to set Venezuela on fire from outside. We have to raise the flag of strength and unity.”
The president urged Barack Obama to act swiftly and change his foreign policy toward Venezuela, reminding him that he had given late president Chavez his word that he would not interfere in the domestic affairs of the country.
However, Mr Maduro stressed that “the biggest victory for us will be to achieve peace.”
He welcomed Union of South American Nations (Unasur) secretary-general Ernesto Samper, who is visiting Venezuela, to verify the destabilisation plans that Caracas has already detailed.
Mr Samper thanked the Venezuelan president for his willingness to create dialogue with the opposition.
He said that he would present the evidence provided by Mr Maduro to the Unasur foreign ministers council, stressing that it was for member states to decide on action.
Mr Samper also rejected any violent action threatening the country’s stability and people.