Venezuela walks out of Americas summit in Mexico

Venezuela walks out of Americas summit in Mexico

Venezuela's foreign minister has walked out of a meeting of regional diplomats to discuss the South American country's political crisis, as a 17-year-old anti-government protester was killed during clashes with security forces.

Venezuela handed a letter on its withdrawal to the OAS secretary general on April 29.

"There has been a lot of talk of a humanitarian crisis ... it is another pretext to try to bring about an intervention in Venezuela", Rodriguez said at the start of talks aimed at approving a resolution on the problems in Venezuela.

What failed to gain enough votes was a relatively strongly-worded proposal calling on Maduro to "reconsider" a call for an assembly to re-write the constitution, which has caused masses of Venezuelans to take to the streets to call for elections to replace his unpopular government. What they are trying to do is paying the bills for the USA imperialist system, said the socialist leader in reference to the foreign minister meeting that began today to analyze the situation in Venezuela.

In Caracas on Monday, Venezuelan opposition activists battled security forces at one of the largest demonstrations in recent weeks after more than two months of nearly daily street clashes.

Mexico and Peru have led the push with the United States for a resolution that defends representative democracy in Venezuela, where President Nicolas Maduro is accused of leading the OPEC member toward dictatorship by delaying elections, jailing opposition activists and pressing to overhaul the constitution.

"We don't expect much of the global community", said protester Luis Serran, 22.

Amid the clashes on Caracas's main highway, 17-year-old Fabian Urbina was killed by a bullet wound to the chest, local authorities said without providing more details.

Mexico, the U.S. and other countries had been lobbying OAS member states to adopt a watered-down Venezuela resolution after seeing resistance from some of the socialist oil exporter's allies. Several others were also reportedly shot.

Almagro called for an election timetable in Venezuela, for political prisoners to be freed, an independent judiciary and respect for the autonomy of the National Assembly legislature.

Meeting in the Mexican resort of Cancun, OAS foreign ministers are seeking to reconcile two opposing proposals on Venezuela and send them to the regional group's general assembly, which is holding its annual meeting here this week. Despite the harassment, Ferrer said Ortega has no plans to resign or leave Venezuela.

Further dampening expectations of a breakthrough, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson chose to skip the gathering.

Earlier Monday in Caracas, groups of government supporters and opponents exchanged shoves and blows outside the offices of Venezuela's attorney general, who has opposed the planned constitutional overhaul in a break with the Maduro administration.

"This doesn't intimidate her", Ferrer told The Associated Press.