CARACAS-- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Saturday charged the United States was trying to oust Syria's leader to seize the country's resources.
"The attack on Syria has begun, there have been some supposed peaceful protests and some deaths (...) and they are accusing the president (Bashar al-Assad) of killing his people," Chavez said at a political event.
"And then the Yankees come in to bomb the people in order to save them. What cynicism on the empire's part," Chavez said using a term Cuba and Venezuela routinely use to criticize US international action.
More deadly violence erupted in Syria on Saturday as snipers killed two people and demonstrators torched an office of the ruling Baath party of the president. It was day 12 of dissent in a country renowned for its iron grip on security.
Chavez, who said he had spoken with Assad by phone, compared the Syrian situation with the crisis in Libya, where an international coalition with UN backing has been striking at forces loyal to its leader, Moamar Gadhafi, for a week.
"It's the same model," charged Chavez. "Generate internal conflicts, bloodshed, in a country in order to then step in, seize its natural resources and make it a colony. It is a new model they have come up with."