U.S. urges calm in Venezuela, encourages dialogue

WASHINGTON Mon Feb 24, 2014 2:27pm EST

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States is working with the Organization of American States (OAS) and regional partners to urge calm in Venezuela, the White House said on Monday, as that South American country faces its most sustained unrest in a decade.

White House spokesman Jay Carney expressed concern about developments in Venezuela and said the United States has made clear that with the OAS and regional partners "we are working to urge calm and encourage a genuine dialogue among all Venezuelans."

"Another way of putting this is that when President (Nicolas) Maduro calls for a dialogue with the U.S. president and an exchange of ambassadors, he should focus instead on a dialogue with the Venezuelan people - because that it what is at issue here," Carney told a news briefing.

(Reporting by Will Dunham; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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