US Ambassador Nikki Haley says the United States has called for the first-ever Security Council consultations on Venezuela to seek joint efforts to ensure that President Nicolas Maduro ends violence and restores democracy.
She said in a statement ahead of today's closed-door meeting that Venezuela is "on the verge of humanitarian crisis," with medicine unavailable, hospitals lacking supplies and people facing difficulty finding food.
Haley said "peaceful protesters have been injured, arrested and even killed by their own government." Britain's UN Ambassador Matthew Rycroft warned that if things go wrong, Venezuela could "descend into conflict" and threaten international peace and security.
He called today's briefing by Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Miroslav Jenca a first step in raising awareness in the council, which has been talking about conflict prevention.