Obama criticizes Venezuela's ties to Iran, Cuba - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Obama criticizes Venezuela's ties to Iran, Cuba

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CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) -- President Barack Obama is criticizing the Venezuelan government's rights record and its ties to Iran and Cuba in comments to a Venezuelan newspaper.

Obama says the U.S. is concerned that actions by President Hugo Chavez's government "have restricted the universal rights of the Venezuelan people, threatened basic democratic values, and failed to contribute to the security in the region."

Obama made the comments in written responses to questions from the Venezuelan newspaper El Universal. The newspaper published his comments on Monday.

Obama also says he thinks "the Venezuelan government's ties to Iran and Cuba have not served the interests of Venezuela or the Venezuelan people."

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

APNP-12-19-11 1022CST

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