A powerful Socialist lawmaker in Venezuela, dubbed “the Pablo Escobar of Venezuela,” may have ordered for Senator Macro Rubio to be assassinated.
Miami Herald reports:
One of Venezuela’s most powerful leaders may have put out an order to kill Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, a fervent critic of the South American country’s government, according to intelligence obtained by the U.S. last month.
Though federal authorities couldn’t be sure at the time if the uncorroborated threat was real, they took it seriously enough that Rubio has been guarded by a security detail for several weeks in both Washington and Miami.
Believed to be behind the order: Diosdado Cabello, the influential former military chief and lawmaker from the ruling socialist party who has publicly feuded with Rubio.
At a July 19 Senate hearing, the same day he was first spotted with more security, Rubio repeated his line that Cabello — who has long been suspected by U.S. authorities of drug trafficking — is “the Pablo Escobar of Venezuela.” A week ago on Twitter, Cabello dubbed the senator “Narco Rubio.”
The death threat was outlined in a memo to several law enforcement agencies disseminated last month by the Department of Homeland Security. The memo, designated “law enforcement sensitive” but not classified, was obtained by the Miami Herald.
The memo revealed an “order to have Senator Rubio assassinated,” though it also warned that “no specific information regarding an assassination plot against Senator Rubio has been garnered thus far” and that the U.S. had not been able to verify the threat. That Cabello has been a vocal Rubio critic in Venezuelan media was also noted, a sign federal authorities are well aware of the political bluster complicating the situation.
As Venezuela continues its descent into chaos, the world is getting a front row seat to what Socialism does to a country. Gearing up to the country’s elections, two opposition leaders, Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma, were forcibly removed from their homes.
ABC News reports:
Two of Venezuela’s leading opposition figures were taken away from their homes by the country’s intelligence service early Tuesday morning, according to their families.
Family members posted videos of opposition leaders Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma being detained and claimed that Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro should be held responsible for whatever happened to them.
“12:27 am: The time when the dictatorship kidnaps Leopoldo at my house,” Lopez’s wife, Lilian Tintori, tweeted in Spanish.
“They just took Leopoldo from the house. We do not know where he is or where he is being taken. Maduro is responsible if something happens to him,” she wrote in a separate tweet.
Tintori also shared a video that appeared to show Lopez being pushed into a vehicle marked “SEBIN,” an abbreviation for Venezuela’s intelligence agency.
Ledezma’s daughter, Vanessa Ledezma, shared similar footage on Tuesday morning, writing in Spanish: “I hold Nicolas Maduro responsible for my father’s life … the sebin just dragged him away, we don’t know where he is. Let the whole world know!”
The Trump Administration released a statement condemning the illegitimate elections.
The US promised “strong and swift” action against the architects of the authoritarianism.
— Francisco Palmieri (@WHAAsstSecty) July 31, 2017