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Maduro pushes back on DOJ charges, calls Trump 'racist cowboy'

Maduro pushes back on DOJ charges, calls Trump 'racist cowboy'
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Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro on Thursday called President TrumpDonald John TrumpAppeals court OKs White House diverting military funding to border wall construction Pentagon: Tentative meeting between spy agencies, Biden transition set for early next week Conservative policy director calls Section 230 repeal an 'existential threat' for tech MORE a “racist cowboy" after the U.S. indicted him and his inner circle on several charges earlier in the day.

In his response, Maduro said that he is ready to fight by whatever means necessary should the U.S. invade Venezuela, The Associated Press reports.

Maduro was charged with narco-terrorism and 13 other Venezuelan officials were also charged by U.S. attorneys in New York, Washington and Florida. The indictments state that Maduro allegedly attempted to weaponize cocaine by "flooding" U.S. communities with the drug.

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Attorney General William BarrBill BarrKellyanne Conway acknowledges Biden as apparent winner Trump Pentagon nominee alleged Biden 'coup': report Ex-FBI lawyer who falsified document in Trump-Russia probe seeks to avoid prison MORE said that the U.S. was not indicting a foreign head of state, which would be unprecedented, pointing out that the U.S. recognizes Juan Guaidó as the Venezuelan president.

"We do not recognize Maduro as the president of Venezuela. Obviously we indicted Noriega under similar circumstances, we did not recognize Noriega as the president of Panama," Barr said, referring to the U.S.'s 1988 indictment of former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega. The U.S. invaded Panama in 1989.

The White House recognizes Guaidó as Venezuela's official president. A controversial election in 2018 led to Maduro being reelected to a second six-year term.