We are brothers: Maduro and Erdogan toast friendship with deals

Magnificent future for Turkey and Venezuela Maduro

Magnificent future for Turkey and Venezuela Maduro

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro conferred the country's highest distinction, the Order of the Liberator, on his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan during the event, local media reported.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro insists that national gold exports should continue despite sweeping United States sanctions targeting the industry.

"We know that the countries want to dominate and press, as they do with the rest of the world, and they have even threatened their lives and personal integrity", stated Erdogan.

Erdoğan, the first Turkish president to visit Venezuela, said that bilateral trade between Turkey and Venezuela has jumped more than six-fold over the previous year, exceeding $1 billion in the three quarters of 2018. "We have strong potentials in our economic relations with Venezuela", Erdogan said.

In the face of such threats, Ankara will work to enhance trade ties with Venezuela to help the Latin American state deal with its economic crisis, Erdogan said.

Caracas has made an effort to reduce dependence on US-led or -controlled financial institutions and instruments, including the dollar, and committed in September to trading in euros, yuan and "other convertible currencies" amid United States restrictions.

Washington has imposed sanctions on Venezuelan officials it accuses of corruption, and on certain financial transactions with the Maduro government, which it accuses of violating human rights and triggering an economic meltdown.

He underlined his confidence that Turkish investors would "act on the interests of both countries", praising the "beautiful" buildings erected in the South America country by Turkish firms. Ties between Turkey and the United States, two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies, have also been strained.

The Turkish president accused some "countries and circles", which he did not name, of being behind the assassination attempt on Maduro last August while attending a military parade broadcast on air.

Following his talks with Erdogan, Maduro headed to Moscow for talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, slated for Wednesday, according to the Kremlin.

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