US military planes land near Venezuela border with aid

US military planes land near Venezuela border with aid

A US military transport plane carrying humanitarian aid meant for Venezuelans landed on Saturday in the Colombian border city of Cucuta, where food and medicine is being stored amid uncertainty over how and where aid will be distributed.

The first aid shipment, which included basic foodstuffs and medical supplies, arrived on February 8 and is being stored in a Cucuta warehouse.

Venezuela is enduring the biggest economic crisis in its modern history, with hyperinflation predicted to hit 10 million percent this year, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

"It is a farce that Maduro uses Hezbollah-related media to deny that the Iranian-backed terrorist movement is using Venezuela as a hub for activity across Latin America", Shimon Samuels, director for International Relations at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said in a statement. The border city, which is swollen with migrants from Venezuela, is serving as a collection point for aid that's supposed to be distributed by supporters of Juan Guaido, the congressional leader recognized by the USA and many other nations as Venezuela's legitimate president.

"I know a thing or two about the music business, and I'm old enough to remember how George Harrison's concert for Bangladesh and Bob Geldof's Live Aid moved the world to action", the founder of the Virgin air group Branson said.

On Friday the US Treasury announced that it was imposing sanctions on five intelligence and security officials close to "former" President Maduro.

Previous aid shipments came on commercial planes.

"We came to ask for the solidarity of the governments of the world", said Lester Toledo, coordinator for global help for Venezuela. We appreciate the letters and the recognition of President Guaidó. "Help us save lives!"

His vice-president has alleged, without evidence, that the aid packages are contaminated. "Maduro has no argument, the person sitting in power doesn't let the humanitarian aid reach his people who are dying of hunger", Trujillo said.

Guaido has targeted February 23 for entry of the aid, more of which arrived for the stockpile on Saturday.

Maduro, however, said the aid will not be brought into his nation, and he blames US economic sanctions for Venezuela's problems.

Food supplies, hygiene kits and nutritional supplements have been stockpiled near the Venezuelan border in Cucuta, Colombia. The White House is pressuring so that none of our bank accounts work.

"They've stolen $30 billion and are offering four crumbs of rotten food", added the beleaguered socialist leader, referring to the United States.

"We have the necessary experience, we know it is a very complex issue, but we will do our best to coordinate the distribution and organization of this humanitarian aid", he said.

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