Friday, May 29, 2015Friday, May 29, 2015

Panama warns Venezuela on debt

Published on Mar 8, 2014 4:18 AM

PANAMA CITY (AFP) - President Ricardo Martinelli warned Venezuela Friday that its decision to break off relations with Panama should not be used as an excuse to renege on its more than US$1 billion (S$1.26 billion) debt.

"I don't want to think that this is an excuse not to pay and that the Venezuelan state is a deadbeat," he told reporters.

Venezuela on Thursday ordered the expulsion of Panama's ambassador and three other diplomats.

At least 20 people have been killed in more than a month of anti-government protests in Venezuela that President Nicolas Maduro blames on a US-backed "fascist" plot.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!