Venezuela expels three US diplomats

Venezuela's President Maduro has announced that the country is to expel three US diplomats on the grounds of sabotage aimed at destabilizing the country. "Get out of Venezuela, gringos go home," he said in a televised speech. The three US nationals have been given 48 hours to leave the country, after the president asked his foreign minister, Elias Jaua, to see to their deportation. The announcement was made during a speech in front of 200 soldiers of the national armed forces. President Maduro has continued the anti-US rhetoric of his predecessor Hugo Chavez. His tone, like Chavez's, which has been warmly received in Venezuela. The US embassy in Venezuela has yet to comment, saying a formal expulsion request has not yet been received. President Maduro blames many of the country's problems on the U-S, in particular blaming a recent country-wide electricity failure on the QUOTE "dark forces of US imperialism". The president also blames the country's chronic shortages of basic goods on an economic war being waged by Washington on the country's socialism. Maduro's critics claim the country's problems are not the fault of the United States, and that maintaining bad relations with Washington is not a wise move in the long run. The United States is still the only remaining country not to have recognized the legitimacy of Maduro's win in the April presidential elections. Venezuela's recent expulsion of US diplomats is the latest in a series of political frictions between Caracas and Washington. While some critics believe the decision by the venezuelan president will polarise politics in the country, Maduro's followers agree with him in protecting national interests.

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