American journalist returns to U.S. after being detained in Venezuela - Kogonuso

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Mar 9, 2019

American journalist returns to U.S. after being detained in Venezuela

An American journalist, who was detained by authorities in Venezuela, is speaking out upon his return to U.S. soil on Thursday.
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Cody Weddle, a freelance reporter for several news outlets, was detained and questioned for more than 12-hours on Wednesday by Venezuelan security officials, who had ties to dictator Nicolas Maduro’s regime.

“It was very clear that they wanted me to say several things, political things, they wanted me to say that Nicolas Maduro is still the president,” explained Weedle.

The journalist said his interrogators covered his face with a ski mask and accused him of treason, espionage, and removing military artifacts. The guards searched through his equipment and personal belongings.

“They continually kept asking if I had contacts in the military, if I had contacts in the local police force or the national police force,” said Weedle. “They were going through my phone, they wanted to know who were the local journalists, who were the local journalists who worked with me.”

In addition to going hours without food or water, these officials also accused him of having contacts with senior military officials.

Weddle’s detention comes after his recent reports on the fracturing of the Venezuelan military and the return of opposition leader Juan Guaido despite Maduro blocking him from the country.

Guaido and several U.S. lawmakers from both sides of the aisle condemned the incident. Florida Senator Marco Rubio said this was only a ploy to intimidate journalists from reporting on Guaido in the country.

Weddle is the second journalist to be detained and interrogated by the Venezuelan government. Despite the unfortunate events, Weddle said he plans on returning to Venezuela.

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