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American Citizen Hero Released in Venezuela, Trump Announces



WASHINGTON – President Trump announces he has been imprisoned in Venezuela for two years without a trial on his way home to the United States and wants to be reunited with his family at the White House Saturday evening. [19659002] Mr. Trump made the announcement about Joshua Holt, the Utah man who has been in a caracas jail since 2016, on Twitter, calling him a "hostage," and saying the release will make the people of Utah happy.

Mr. Holt, 26, traveled to Venezuela in 2016 to marry a woman on the internet. But he was arrested shortly after and accused by the socialist government in Venezuela of stockpiling weapons.

In a statement posted to Twitter, Senator Orrin Hatch, Republican of Utah, said that Mr. Holt's release, and that of his wife, was Mr. Trump and former President Barack Obama and Nicolás Maduro, president of Venezuela.

"I could not be more honored Josh with his sweet, long- suffering family in Riverton, "Mr. Hatch said in the statement.

Mr. Hatch so thanked Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, a Republican and chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, who met with Mr. Maduro on Friday.

Mr. Holt's release also comes soon after he posted two short videos on Facebook. In one video, he said, "I've been completing my government for two years.

There were indications that Mr. Maduro was loosening his hold on other prisoners in the country.

Earlier in the week, in a speech before the country's Constituent Assembly, Mr. Maduro said he was still in protest last year and had committed "political violence."

"I want to go free – and that they

Alfredo Romero, a group that represents Venezuelan political prisoners, said at least 20 people were released Friday in the state of Zulia after protesting earlier this year over paint of electricity

Omar Mora, a Venezuelan lawyer representing political prisoners, said the recent releases sidestepped the fate of many politicians and activists, more than 450 by his count, who remain jailed because of the government's continued to s ee them as a threat.

"The government claims to release people in the end it does not release any of the political prisoners who are on our lists," said Mr. Mora.


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