Venezuela accuses US of blocking diplomatic efforts
CARACAS (AFP) - Venezuela accused the United States of hampering its diplomatic efforts on Thursday, saying Washington was denying airspace to its China-bound president and blocking visas for its UN delegation.
In a fiery speech in the capital Caracas, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro bristled with outrage at the "serious offense" of denying his plane rights to American airspace over the Atlantic, and vowed his planned trip to Beijing this weekend would not be delayed.
The leftist leader - hand-picked successor to the late anti-US firebrand leftist Hugo Chavez - also accused the US of refusing visas to some of the members of his delegation to the UN General Assembly next week.
US officials did not immediately confirm or comment on the charges.