US mercenary says group plotted to seize Venezuela’s presidential palace

Airan Berry, captured by security forces, says group aimed to haul Maduro away ‘however necessary’

An American soldier of fortune captured during a botched attempt to seize Venezuela’s leader has claimed his group had plotted to raid Nicolás Maduro’s presidential palace before spiriting him away “however necessary”.

Airan Berry, 41, was one of two US mercenaries captured by Venezuelan security forces this week after what appears to have been a catastrophically executed attempt to topple Maduro by sneaking into the South American country in a pair of weather-beaten fishing boats.

Related: Venezuela: captured US mercenary claims he planned to abduct Maduro

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Venezuela leader calls for extradition of US security contractor after failed raid – video

President Nicolás Maduro has called for the extradition of a US security contractor after an alleged incursion into the country to abduct him failed.

Luke Denman, one of two US citizens captured during the incident, said he was contracted to a private security firm run by Jordan Goudreau, in an an interview televised in Venezuela. While the US government has denied any role in the alleged raid, Maduro has called for Goudreau to be extradited to Venezuela 

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Venezuela: captured US mercenary describes failed plot to abduct Maduro – video

Luke Denman is shown on Venezuelan TV after being arrested. Denman was one of two American mercenaries apprehended after a failed attempt to topple Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro.

Denman claimed he was on a mission to seize control of Venezuela’s main airport in order to abduct its authoritarian leader – and he alleged that he was acting under the command of Donald Trump.

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Venezuela: captured US mercenary claims he planned to abduct Maduro

Luke Denman was one of two US citizens seized this week after what appears to have been a bungled bid to overthrow Maduro

An American mercenary captured after a bungled attempt to topple Nicolás Maduro has claimed he was on a mission to seize control of Venezuela’s main airport in order to abduct its leader – and he alleged that was acting under the command of Donald Trump.

Luke Denman was one of two US citizens seized by Venezuelan security forces this week after what appears to have been a catastrophically conceived bid to overthrow Maduro by sneaking into the South American country in a fleet of battered fishing boats.

Related: Donald Trump denies link to Venezuela armed raid by US citizens

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Footage shows Venezuelan arrest of ‘mercenary’ in alleged US incursion – video

Thirteen men were arrested in Venezuela, of which two are believed to be US citizens after what the country’s president, Nicolás Maduro, described a failed armed incursion plot coordinated with Washington to enter the country via the Caribbean coast and oust him.

Eight people were killed during the incursion attempt on Sunday, Venezuelan authorities said. Donald Trump has denied any involvement by the US government 

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Donald Trump denies link to Venezuela armed raid by US citizens

  • Trump: ‘It has nothing to do with our government’
  • Two US ‘mercenaries’ held after Caribbean coast attack foiled

Donald Trump has denied any involvement by the US government in what Venezuelan officials have called a failed armed incursion in the South American country that led to the capture of two American “mercenaries”.

The president made the comment to reporters at the White House after Venezuela’s president, Nicolás Maduro, announced that authorities there had detained two US citizens working with a US military veteran who has claimed responsibility for the foiled operation.

Related: Venezuela: anti-Maduro battle isn’t over as ex-US soldier says he launched raid

Related: US indicts Nicolás Maduro and other top Venezuelan leaders for drug trafficking

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Venezuela detains two Americans allegedly involved in failed raid to remove Maduro

President Nicolas Maduro claims men were among 13 ‘terrorists’ involved in plot to enter country via the coast and oust him

Venezuelan authorities have detained two US citizens allegedly working with a US military veteran who has claimed responsibility for a failed armed incursion into the oil-producing country, President Nicolas Maduro said on Monday.

In a state television address, Maduro said authorities arrested 13 “terrorists” on Monday allegedly involved in a plot he said was coordinated with Washington to enter the South American country via the Caribbean coast and oust him.

Related: Venezuela: anti-Maduro battle isn’t over as ex-US soldier says he launched raid

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Venezuela: anti-Maduro battle isn’t over as ex-US soldier says he launched raid

Jordan Goudreau, who was linked to plot to topple Maduro, said his troops are still in action as government said it foiled ‘invasion’

A former US special forces soldier linked to a murky and apparently bungled attempt to topple Venezuela’s leader, Nicolás Maduro, has insisted his troops are still in action after launching “a daring amphibious raid” into the country.

In a video released late on Sunday – hours after Maduro’s government claimed it had foiled a United States-backed sea “invasion” near Venezuela’s main international airport – Jordan Goudreau claimed the battle was not over.

Related: The plot that failed: how Venezuela’s ‘uprising’ fizzled

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Riot in Venezuela prison kills at least 40 and injures 50, including warden

The violence at Llanos penitentiary started when prisoners demanded relatives be allowed to deliver food

A riot erupted at a prison in central Venezuela, leaving at least 40 people dead and 50 more injured, including a national guard officer who was wounded by an explosion and the warden, who suffered a knife wound, authorities said.

The upheaval at the Llanos penitentiary on Friday started with an inmate protest demanding that their relatives be allowed to deliver them food. An armed confrontation then broke out between inmates and guards, lawmaker María Beatriz Martínez said.

Related: US calls on Maduro and Guaidó to stand down in Venezuela transition plan

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How coronavirus spread through South America

From his accommodation in Rio de Janeiro, the Guardian’s Latin America correspondent, Tom Phillips, can hear the nightly protests against Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, where cases are steadily rising. He discusses how Brazil and other South American countries are trying to deal with the pandemic

This episode first aired on Today in Focus, the Guardian’s global daily news podcast made by the Guardian team in London.

You can read more of Tom Phillips reporting on South America here.

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