Venezuelan president pins country’s economic hopes on Turkey

Venezuela’s embattled leader President Nicolas Maduro has announced that his country will emerge from economic crisis as part of an “alternative” economic bloc together with Turkey, Russia and China, according to pro-government Turkish news site EnSonHaber.

The country would not surrender to external pressure, Maduro told viewers during a live broadcast on state television on Sunday, calling U.S. President Donald Trump “a new Hitler”.

The United States and European Union have both placed sanctions on Venezuela in the last week, citing the deterioration of the rule of law, democratic principles and human rights, plus the large number of political prisoners detained by Maduro’s government.

Turkey, Russia and China have all been the target of similar criticisms by the West, leading Venezuela to make increasing calls for solidarity.

During a visit to Turkey last month, Maduro told a crowd at Ankara University: “We have come to Turkey because we believe in Turkey.”

“We believe that a new power has been born,” he said.

A commentator at Islamist newspaper Yeni Akit tweeted that the news would anger Turkey’s “fascist left”.

“The hope of the Che (Guevara) of our day is Turkey, while the hope of local left drifters is the US/EU/Israel,” he said.