Venezuelan president tells Army to prep rifles, missiles and tanks as he reacts to U.S. sanctions/warnings

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Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is now asking his Army to make sure it has “rifles, missiles and well-oiled tanks at the ready” after the Trump administration signed new restrictions, imposing bans on Venezuela. Maduro made the declaration during a military exercise on Monday, in the city of Maracay.

“We have been shamelessly threatened by the most criminal empire that ever existed and we have the obligation to prepare ourselves to guarantee peace,” Maduro said according to AFP.

President Donald J. Trump has been heavily critical of President Maduro’s questionable moves in an attempt to consolidate power. Trump referred to Maduro as a “dictator.”

In August, the U.S. government hit Maduro and 20 other top officials with financial sanctions. It also banned American finance companies from lending money to Venezuela’s government or its state-run oil company.

At the time, President Trump said he wouldn’t rule out a “military option” regarding a resolution to Venezuela’s political struggles. He added that military action is “certainly something that we could pursue.”

On September 19, President Trump sent a Twitter message, directed at Venezuela’s leaders. It read: “We call for the full restoration of democracy and political freedoms in Venezuela, and we want it to happen very, very soon!”

In his speech Monday, Maduro said he wanted prosperity for his country, but added: “We need to have rifles, missiles, and well-oiled tanks at the ready…to defend every inch of the territory if needs be.”

Venezuela faces an ongoing economic crisis, caused by socialist policies of Maduro and his predecessor, the late former President Hugo Chavez.

According to reports, Maduro has encouraged Venezuelan’s to start eating rabbits for protein, as the country faces a severe food shortage. Low supplies of food and medicine have left millions starving and desperate for medical treatment.

A study which came out earlier this year estimates that 75 percent of Venezuelans lost an average of 19 pounds in the last year due, because of food shortages.

Rabbits were given to some people, as part of a pilot project for the rabbit-eating initiative. Many people, however, reportedly opted to keep the rabbits as pets. Some apparently put bow ties on the bunnies and cuddled with them in bed.

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