The Venezuelan government suspended CNN en Español on Wednesday after it broadcast a report about fake passports that drew angry reactions from government officials.
CNN’s AC 360 aired a report on Feb. 6 named Passports in the Shadows, which alleged that Venezuelan vice president Tareck El Aissami was directly linked to the sale of over 170 passports from the nation’s embassy in Iraq to members of terrorist group Hezbollah.
The nation’s National Telecommunications Commission (Conatel) announced Wednesday that it initiated the “administrative sanction” on the channel because of news stories it considered “direct aggression” against Venezuela that were “defaming and distorting the truth,” though the Passports in the Shadows report wasn’t directly named.
According to CNN, “Foreign Minister Delcy Rodríguez accused CNN of performing what she defined as an ‘imperialistic media operation’ against her country in last week’s broadcast of the yearlong investigation.”
The channel has now begun broadcasting its content on YouTube. Venezuelans can now access CNN en Español free of charge.
— CNN en Español (@CNNEE) February 16, 2017
The relationship between the U.S. and Venezuela is not good right now. The U.S. treasury department recently placed sanctions on El Aissami, referring to him as a “drug kingpin.”
Pres. Trump added fuel to the fire yesterday after posting a photo of himself in the White House meeting with Sen. Marco Rubio, VP Mike Pence, and most importantly Lilian Tintori, the wife of jailed Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 15, 2017
Ironically, Tintori did multiple hits on CNN en Español yesterday evening after her meeting in the White House.