Top US diplomat visits Caracas to smooth tense relations

AP News
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Posted: May 12, 2015 10:32 AM

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A senior U.S. State Department official has made a second visit to Caracas for talks aimed at easing tensions between the U.S. and the socialist South American country.

According to the State Department, Thomas Shannon left Caracas on Tuesday after a two-day visit. Details of the visit were not disclosed.

Relations between the two countries long have been testy, but they deteriorated rapidly earlier this year after the U.S. declared Venezuela a security threat and imposed sanctions on top officials. In turn, Venezuela in March gave the U.S. 15 days to slash its embassy staff in Caracas. The U.S. has not done so.

Shannon previously visited Caracas in April to meet with President Nicolas Maduro.