Journalist John McEvoy speaks about a secretive British government unit aimed at the ‘reconstruction’ of Venezuela.

The files also reveal private discussions between Venezuelan opposition figures and UK officials, detailing proposals for the promotion of British business after a planned coup. Read the article here.

En Español.

Full transcript

What we found in an article that’s published in The Canary is the existence of a specialist unit within the UK Foreign Office dedicated to reconstructing Venezuela post-coup. So this office has never been acknowledged and the existence of which has never been acknowledged by the Foreign Office, by the UK government. It’s called the Venezuela reconstruction unit and it’s headed by John Saville the former UK ambassador to Venezuela between 2014 and 2017. Now in an official response, the UK government says that this unit, that is never acknowledged, is supposedly to help deal with the political and economic crisis in Venezuela.

However, in private communications that we’ve obtained between the Juan Guaidó UK representative, Vanessa Neumann, and UK officials, we’ve found that there’s some discussion about planning for the sustenance of British business interests in a reconstructed Venezuela. So we get the kind of idea of what Britain’s interest in reconstructing Venezuela is there.

As well as that we’ve found; Vanessa Neumann is the CEO of a company called Asymmetrica. Now, in corporate listings from 2015 in Florida there are two other names that appear as co-directors and that’s Alec Bierbauer and Michael Marks, and now these two men are intimately connected to the CIA and to the US military, to US intelligence services. Both of them were involved in the creation of the Washington’s drone warfare program post 9/11, and so I mean it’s quite interesting to see what why those representatives in the UK has such close connections to the US Secret Services and of course this kind of British involvement in Venezuela is on top of freezing £1.4 billion worth of gold back in January 2019 and the Department for International Development is sending humanitarian assistance supposedly, but we know it works it often works with USAID and it’s not revealing to whom this assistance is going.

So you know this fits into a long line of kind of British support for overthrowing the Venezuelan government.