Venezuela stages a show of force after being labelled a security threat by the U.S. Paul Chapman reports.
This was Venezuela's response to the U.S. branding it a security threat and imposing sanctions on seven of its officials. Some 80, 000 Venezuelan troops and 20, 000 civilians were mobilised for a show of force in the form of a 10-day military exercise. The Union of South American Nations has issued a statement rejecting the U.S. moves and lending support to Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro. (SOUNDBITE)(Spanish) VENEZUELAN PRESIDENT NICOLAS MADURO SAYING: "It was approved unanimously, the absolute support of Venezuela and the rejection of the executive order of the United States that threatens our fatherland." Opposition leaders in Venezuela say the military exercise is a farce. They're accusing Maduro of distracting the country from its long queues for scarce products, sky high inflation and rampant crime.