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Group.png Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela   Sourcewatch WikiquoteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Venezuela (orthographic projection).svg
Flag of Venezuela (state).svg
LocationSouth America
LeaderPresident of Venezuela
Typenation state
Interest ofWilliam Camacaro, Eva Golinger, Dan Kovalik, Venezuela Solidarity Campaign
Member ofInternational Criminal Court, Organisation of American States, UN
SubpageVenezuela/Foreign Minister
Venezuela/Vice President
Venezuela possesses the world's largest oil reserves

Venezuela, officially the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela,[1] is a country on the northern coast of South America, consisting of a continental landmass and a large number of small islands and islets in the Caribbean Sea. The capital and largest urban agglomeration is the city of Caracas. It has a territorial extension of 916,445 km2 (353,841 sq mi). The continental territory is bordered on the north by the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, on the west by Colombia, Brazil on the south, Trinidad and Tobago to the north-east and on the east by Guyana.[2]

Fossil fuel reserves

Counting tar sands, Venezuela has the largest oil reserves of any nation state.[3] Venezuela has the 8th largest gas reserves of any nation state, about 3% of total global reserves.

In March 2015 the administration of Barack Obama, at the urging of US oil corporations, declared Venezuela to be a “threat to the national security” of the US.[4]

Thatcher encouraged Chávez coup

In 2002, a foreign-backed attempted coup failed to depose Hugo Chavez after a mass display of popular support.

In the context of the failed coup in Equatorial Guinea in 2004, former British PM Margaret Thatcher was said to have asked whether Simon Mann had yet met a group, led by a man called "Sanchos", who were seeking to remove Hugo Chávez from Venezuela. Mann wrote:

"No – I hadn't: but, Mark says, we are seeing him next day, in Eaton Place, just next door." He continues with Mrs Thatcher's reply: "'Good. Well, I hope that goes well too.' She looked at me with her imperial gaze. 'We must always look after our friends, Simon … as I'm sure you know.'"

Mann declined to comment.[5]

BBC bias and lies

On 8 February 2019, Venezuela Analysis published an article entitled "The BBC and Venezuela: Bias and Lies", which began:

The mass media under capitalism is part of the state machine and uses its influence and “prestige” of being “objective” and “independent” to play an important role in the propaganda element. In the UK, the BBC has perfected its skills in preparing the population to accept that any coup that imperialism supports is justified. And this they have done about Venezuela.
"The BBC programme 'Revolution in Ruins: The Hugo Chavez Story', broadcast on 16 January, sought to prepare viewers to accept and support any moves against President Maduro, as the inheritor of Chavez’s legacy. And within a week, an attempted coup had begun![6]

Gold reserves

Full article: Gold

In November 2011, President Hugo Chavez ordered the repatriation of 85% of the country's bullion reserves (some 160 tonnes of gold, worth more than $11bn) to protect Venezuela's reserves from global economic turbulence:

"The gold is returning to where it was always meant to be: the vaults of the Central Bank of Venezuela," Mr Chavez said.

Critics suggested that Mr Chavez was acting out of fears that Venezuela's overseas assets could one day be frozen by sanctions, as happened to his friend and ally, the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Most of Venezuela's foreign gold reserves are held in London.[7]

On 7 February 2019, Ken Livingstone joined protesters to demand that the Bank of England returns the remaining $1.3 billion of Venezuela’s gold. Livingstone said:

"The holding of this gold is part of the UK’s slavish following of Trump’s support for a coup and possible military intervention."[8]

High Court ruling

On 2 July 2020, the UK High Court ruled against Venezuela's government in a legal battle over access to $1bn (£820m) of gold stored in the Bank of England. Judge Nigel Teare said:

"Her Majesty's Government does recognise Mr Guaidó in the capacity of the constitutional interim president of Venezuela and, it must follow, does not recognise Mr Maduro as the constitutional interim president of Venezuela."

Lawyers for the Venezuelan Central Bank, which brought the case, said they would appeal against the judgment.[9]

Appeal allowed

In September 2020, the Maduro Board of the Central Bank of Venezuela successfully appealed to the Court of Appeal:

Question: Does Her Majesty's Government (formally) recognise Juan Guaidó or Nicolás Maduro and, if so, in what capacity, on what basis and from when? Answer: No. While such recognition is conclusive for the purpose of determining who is the de jure President of Venezuela, it leaves open the possibility that HMG may impliedly recognise Mr Maduro as the de facto President of Venezuela.[10]

UK Supreme Court

On 19 July 2021, the Guaidó Board of the Central Bank of Venezuela appealed to the UK Supreme Court.[11]

Independent journalist John McEvoy tweeted:

The proceedings can be viewed live here.[12]
Here's the UK Supreme Court timetable, UKSC ruling expected 22 July

The UK Supreme Court unanimously allowed the appeal of the 'Guaidó Board' appeal in part, holding that the UK Government has recognised Mr Guaidó as interim President of Venezuela and that the act of state doctrine prevents the English courts from adjudicating the legality, under Venezuelan law, of Mr Guaidó’s appointments to the Central Bank of Venezuela. However, the Supreme Court also held that the 'Maduro Board' may rely on judgments of the Venezuelan Supreme Tribunal of Justice (“Venezuelan STJ”) striking down Mr Guaidó’s appointments, if those judgments meet the requirements for recognition by the English courts (whether or not they do was remitted to the Commercial Court). The judgment represents an important development of the act of state doctrine, which will help UK-recognised foreign governments to take control of assets in England and, in the right circumstances, should provide more legal certainty to financial institutions that have commercial dealings with sovereigns and sovereign owned entities.[13]

Foreign influence operations

In January 2021 the Daily Maverick reports on a Foreign Office connected foundation which allocated £750,000 on a ‘democracy-promotion’ program and an allocation of £250,000 to ‘influence’ local and national ‘media agendas’.[14]



2002 Venezuelan coup attemptA failed CIA-backed coup attempt against President of Venezuela Hugo Chávez.
CaracazoPolice massacre of 2-3000 people after protest against collapsing neoliberal economy.


Groups Headquartered Here

Andrés Bello Catholic University600 JLTop private university in Venezuela
PDVSAOwned by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela


Citizens of Venezuela on Wikispooks

Simón Bolívar24 July 178317 December 1830
Henrique Capriles11 July 1972Part of one of Venezuela's richest families. World Economic Forum Young Global Leader 2012. Participated in coup attempt in 2002, ran for president in 2012 and 2013.
Hugo Chávez28 July 19545 March 201364th President of Venezuela - probably assassinated with cancer-causing drugs.
Eva Golinger19 February 1973A crusading journalist in the cause of exposing US interference in Venezuela and Latin America generally. She has particular expertise in the circumstances surrounding the death of President Hugo Chavez
Gustavo Cisneros1 June 1945Venezuelan media mogul
Thor Halvorssen9 March 1976Venezuelan right wing activist
Moisés Naím5 July 1952One of only a handful of Bilderbergers from outside Europe and North America.
Luisa Ortega11 January 1958Former Attorney General of Venezuela
Nino PaglicciaVenezuelan-Canadian statistician who writes about international relations with a focus on the Americas.
Leo Rafael Reif21 August 1950President of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. On the boards of the World Economic Forum, the Carnegie Endowment, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Broad Institute, etc.
Leamsy Salazar1974Hugo Chavez bodyguard in the years before his death


Related Documents

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:British military presence near Venezuela ‘extremely concerning’Article5 February 2019Phil MillerBritain’s recent history of catastrophic military interventions should rule out any UK participation in Donald Trump’s attempts to destabilise a democratically elected government in Venezuela.”
Document:Canada Rejects Petition to Lift All Sanctions on VenezuelaArticle9 November 2018Nino PaglicciaWhile Canada chooses to speak of the “dire human rights and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela” – where there is none – it ignores, condones and rather endorses Saudi Arabia in the making of one of the worst humanitarian crisis in Yemen. That is the most vicious double standard that a “democratic” country can demonstrate.
Document:Canada sanctions 40 Venezuelans with links to political, economic crisisArticle22 September 2017Michelle ZilioForeign Minister Chrystia Freeland, MP for the Toronto district of University-Rosedale, said: "I have some Venezuelan Canadians living in my constituency and they have been really vocal … and have said our family, our friends, they need help and they're counting on Canada to speak up."
Document:Coordinating Regime Change in Iran and Venezueladiplomatic communication25 August 2010Trowbridge FordIran and Venezuela, prime candidates for regime change
Document:How Chrystia Freeland Organised Donald Trump’s Coup in VenezuelaArticle7 February 2019Eric ZuesseThat’s what Ukraine, and now Venezuela, and many other US coups and invasions, are - and have been - really about. It’s about the ‘peace’ of the graveyard, NOT any democracy, anywhere at all.
Document:In Venezuela, White Supremacy Is a Key Driver of the CoupArticle7 February 2019Greg Palast
William Camacaro
Four centuries of White Supremacy in Venezuela by those who identify their ancestors as European came to an end with the 1998 election of Hugo Chávez, who won with the overwhelming support of the Mestizo majority. This turn away from White Supremacy continues under Nicolás Maduro, Chavez’s chosen successor, who was re-elected in 2018 for a second six-year term.
Document:Is Oil Behind Washington’s Venezuela Coup MadnessArticle3 February 2019William EngdahlLeaving aside whether or not Maduro is a saint, the decision by President Trump to back the Bolton-Pence call for a US intervention in Venezuela may prove a fatal error for the Trump presidency.
Document:Sanctions of Mass Destruction: America’s War on VenezuelaArticle1 February 2019Garikai ChenguAmerica’s largest export used to be manufactured goods made proudly in the United States. Today, America’s largest export is the US dollar. Any nation like Venezuela that threatens that export is met with America’s second largest export: weapons, chief amongst which are Sanctions of Mass Destruction.
Document:The Lima Group: International OutlawsArticle4 February 2019Christopher BlackCanada takes the lead in the aggression against Venezuela on Monday 4 February 2019 when it hosts a meeting in Ottawa of a group of international war crime conspirators, known as the Lima Group, a group of Latin American and Caribbean lackeys of the United States, including Mexico and Canada which was set up by the United States at a meeting in Lima, Peru on 8 August 2017 with the express purpose of overthrowing President Maduro.
Document:The Making of Juan Guaidó: How the US Regime Change Laboratory Created Venezuela’s Coup LeaderArticle29 January 2019Dan Cohen
Max Blumenthal
Juan Guaidó is the product of a decade-long project overseen by Washington’s elite regime change trainers. While posing as a champion of democracy, Guaidó has spent years at the forefront of a violent campaign of destabilisation in Venezuela
Document:Venezuela critics are just Blairites having a kick at Jeremy CorbynInterview7 August 2017George Galloway
Luke Dolan
For nineteen years the United States government and its secret agents have been trying to overthrow the Venezuela political process. Why might that be? Well, there are many reasons but the biggest among them has the smallest name: OIL.
Document:Venezuela, Iran: Trump And The Deep StateArticle22 May 2019Thierry MeyssanSheikh Hassan Rouhani was the primary contact with the Western powers during the Iran-Contra affair. He knows Elliott Abrams personally and put the US deep state in relation with Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, who became the richest billionaire in Iran thanks to this arms traffic.
Document:What’s Not Being Said About the Venezuela Oil WarArticle17 February 2019William EngdahlThe Venezuela Oil War Is Really About Huge Oil Reserves in the District of Guayana Esequiba
Document:What’s REALLY happening in Venezuela – from someone who knowsInterview8 October 2017SKWAWKBOXInterview with Michael Prysner about Venezuela in 2017
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