Hugo Carvajal, the former Venezuelan head of military intelligence, was transported to a correctional facility in Aruba today, following his arrest this past Wednesday on the Caribbean island at the request of the United States government on suspicion of drug trafficking.
Yesterday, the Venezuelan government mounted a brief flight embargo against Aruba, grounding all scheduled flights between the two nations. The flight restrictions were lifted as suddenly as they were placed earlier today. The flight restrictions stranded approximately 540 passengers in Aruba’s Queen Beatrix International Airport.
The temporary travel restrictions were meant to be a direct response to Carvajal’s arrest, which Maduro categorized as a “kidnapping” yesterday. The same kinds of restrictions affected flights to the islands of Curazao, Bonaire, St. Marteen, and the Dutch Antilles, all territories of the Netherlands.
Maduro Speaks on Future of PSUV
Maduro made a number of remarks today during an event in which he set out the PSUV’s direction for the near future following the party’s annual congress last week.
One of Maduro’s priorities for the PSUV includes a grassroots re-organization of the party, “from the UBCH [Unidades de Battala Bolivar-Chavez] to the national level”.
Maduro also assured the audience that the PSUV is still Chavez’s party, and that:
I value our history of battles and victories – I’ve participated in them. We’ve left our mark. It’s not luck that we’ve become the foremost force in this country in such a short time.
The party cannot rest on its laurels. It must legitimize itself every day…