In Peru, Pence Defends Syrian Strike to Latin America Allies


The Trump administration has been trying to rally support in Latin America to further isolate President Nicolas Maduro's regime and press for stricter penalties for Maduro's deepening authoritarian grip on power.

Pence, who is representing the United States at the Summit of the Americas in place of President Donald Trump, said he hoped that the military action, which also involved France and Great Britain, would cause Syria "and their patrons in Russian Federation and Iran" to abandon "the use of chemical weapons against innocent civilians".

Pence was whisked away from the Summit of the Americas late Friday so he could inform USA congressional leaders by phone of Trump's plans to announce the missile strikes.

Pence also said Russian Federation was spreading misinformation about the US missile attacks on Syria.

Pence came residence in Washington ancient Sunday and left Peru on Saturday day.

Trump and Pena Nieto have yet to meet in person since Trump became president past year.

Pence had been scheduled to attend a banquet later Friday hosted by Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra.

Relations between the USA and Cuba have regressed after a thaw during former President Barack Obama's administration.

Relations between the countries have also been strained amid mysterious sonic attacks that US diplomats in Havana say have left them with ailments including headaches, hearing problems and concussions.

Pence spent the morning meeting with several leaders, including President Enrique Pena Nieto of Mexico. Left unsaid was whether Pence's overtures might eventually lead to a joint Trump-Pena Nieto meeting, their first. It said Friday that they will discuss U.S-Mexico relations. Authorities have banned the two most popular opposition leaders from running for election.

Pence's to-do list included smoothing over differences with Mexico, America's southern neighbour, amid unease over Trump's decision to send troops to the border and harsh rhetoric on immigration.

Pence met with Pena Nieto on Saturday. It was an unusual display of cross-party unity. "It's time to find permanent solutions based in the worldwide law to a war that has been going for far too long and ended too many lives", Brazilian President Michel Temer said in the plenary. "The best way into Russian Federation is that you're around the wrong aspect of history", Pence said.

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The vice president says Maduro has turned Venezuela into a dictatorship and has brought about "abject misery".

Vice President Mike Pence says there's a "real possibility" the US could reach a deal with Canada and Mexico on a renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement "within the next several weeks".

Pence says, "We want one message to be clear: We are with the people of Venezuela".

Even so, opposition to Maduro's autocratic government around Latin America is strong, with various leaders viewing an upcoming May 20 presidential election as a farce meant to legitimize his rule.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is praising Peru's "strong stand" on the "tyranny and humanitarian crisis" in Venezuela.

Bolivian President Evo Morales, a longtime critic of the United States, joined Cuba in its criticism of USA policy in the region, including the pressure on Venezuela, an ally. He was meeting with Venezuelan opposition leaders.

Vice President Mike Pence has arrived in Peru for a Latin American summit at which he's expected to push a tough line on Venezuela and point to the an ideal trading partner in the region.

He has said if he's not happy with the terms, then he'll pull the USA out.

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro waves during a ceremony with militia members in Caracas Thomson Reuters CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro, excluded from the Summit of the Americas due to regional censure of his democratic record, mocked the meeting in Lima as a "complete failure" on Saturday. He'll also discuss the influence of Chinese trade in the region.

Vice President Mike Pence has told Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that the "encouraged" by the progress on negotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement and hopeful it can lead to "more fair and reciprocal trade".

Vice President Mike Pence has congratulated Chile's Sebastian Pinera on his return to the presidency.

Vice President Mike Pence's office says the vice president walked out of the Summit of the Americas when Cuba's foreign minister was recognized to speak after him. He'll be subbing for President Donald Trump after the president pulled out of his first planned visit to Latin America to manage the USA response to an apparent chemical weapons attack on civilians in Syria.