A State Department spokeswoman released an update on Joshua Holt, a 25-year-old Utahan who has been detained in Venezuela nearly a year and a half.
“Dec. 12, U.S. citizen Joshua Holt was charged after more than 17 months of detention,” said Heather Nauert, who before joining the administration was a reporter and presenter for Fox News.
U.S. Embassy personnel were not permitted to attend Holt’s court hearing, she said.
“The United States remains extremely concerned for Mr. Holt’s health and welfare, which continues to deteriorate under the custody of SEBIN, the Venezuelan intelligence agency,” she said.
The saga began in early 2016 when Holt, a Mormon, traveled to Venezuela to marry a fellow Mormon Thamara Candelo, whom he met on the internet. Shortly after his arrival, the couple was arrested and Holt was accused of stockpiling weapons.
After rescheduling the preliminary hearing five times, the Venezuelan court finally ordered Holt to stand trial on ambiguous weapons charges, said Holt’s attorney Carlos Trujillo, Holt’s Salt Lake City-based attorney, according to a report in the Salt Lake City Tribune.
Trujillo said that the motive for the Venezuelan government’s detainment of Holt may be using Holt as a bargaining chip after theU.S. leveled economic sanctions against the nation.
Two nephews of Venezuelan First Lady Cilia Flores were also recently sentenced to 18 years in federal prison for drug trafficking, the lawyer said.
In her statement, Nauert said the Venezuelan government must grant immediate consular access to Holt, and reminded the Venezuelan government that pursuant to its international obligations, Venezuela must grant Holt fair trial guarantees.
Holt’s life should not be jeopardized under SEBIN’s custody, she said.
Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, (R.-Utah), also posted an update on Holt’s situation to his to his Facebook page:
Our beloved Holt family in Riverton continues to get bad news out of Venezuela. As we keep Josh and his family in our prayers, I’ve called on the President, Vice President, State Department, and UN Delegation to redouble our efforts to bring Josh home, and I’ve had my staff working to explore new avenues to work with the Venezuelan government and their neighbors to secure Josh’s release on humanitarian grounds.
We will not give up. #JusticeForJosh
Washington DC Democrat Government Poisons Michigan National Guard Troops With Uncooked Meals, Metal Shavings
A whistleblower deployed with a detachment of the Michigan National Guard in Washington, DC has revealed that that his soldiers are being served with unsafe food by the government. The troops are present following the January 20th inauguration.
The staff sergeant revealed the travesty, speaking anonymously to Detroit’s WXYZ. The National Guard had contracted with the Washington DC city government to feed the troops, who were present to protect the city.
“Yesterday, for instance, there were 74 different meals found with raw beef in them,” the sergeant said. “Just yesterday, the lunches were, soldiers had found metal shavings in their food.”
The staff sergeant whistleblower revealed the raw meat had made more than a dozen service members sick with food poisoning, with one soldier even having to go to the hospital after eating the uncooked chicken.
The Michigan National Guard later confirmed that the troops were being effectively food-poisoned by the local government.
The @MINationalGuard provided this statement today:
"The firsthand accounts and pictures of undercooked food being served clearly shows that what is being given to Michigan’s service members is unacceptable."@GovWhitmer spoke with the Acting Sec. of Army about the situation pic.twitter.com/QEaa7G2fRB
— Brian Abel (@BrianAbelTV) March 2, 2021
The MING personnel have since switched to eating MRE’s, or meals-ready-to-eat.
The uncooked food scandal represents the second act of disrespect to Guard members stationed around the Capitol. Pelosi’s House of Representatives had kicked out Guard members who were sleeping in a lobby room following a Democrat Congressman’s complaint that one wasn’t wearing a mask, forcing the troops to sleep in a parking lot on a night where temperatures were near freezing.
The Washington political establishment wishes to use military service members as political props to fearmonger a bogus imminent threat of “insurrection,” but the bastion of globalism can’t even provide edible food to the troops.
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