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Maduro Wants To Meet Trump

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Within two weeks of being slapped with sanctions by the US Government, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said he wants a face-to-face meeting with his American counterpart.

Addressing the newly elected all-powerful Constituent Assembly Thursday, Maduro instructed Venezuela's foreign minister to arrange a meeting or telephone conversation with US President Donald Trump.

Maduro expressed his desire to have a personal conversation with Trump, preferably when heads of state and government from around the world gather for the UN General Assembly in New York on September 20.

"If he's so interested in Venezuela, here I am," Maduro told the 545-member Assembly during a lengthy address.

"Mr Donald Trump, here is my hand," the socialist president said, adding that he wants a strong relationship between Caracas and Washington.

However, the Assembly heard a different tone for the rest of his three-hour speech.

He criticized the "imperialist" US Government for perceived actions against his regime, and vowed that Venezuela will "never cede to foreign powers."

On July 31, US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) added the Venezuelan leader to its list of specially designated nationals, in response to what the White House described as "Maduro regime's recent anti-democratic actions.".

In a controversial election boycotted by the Opposition, a new constituent assembly was elected to draw up a new constitution that has the potential to fundamentally change the rules in favor of Maduro.

by RTT Staff Writer

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