American freed from Venezuela meets with President Trump

Hannah Rogers
May 29, 2018

Holt and his wife were jailed for almost two years on weapons charges that USA officials consider bogus. In retaliation, socialist party boss Diosdado Cabello, a powerful Maduro ally, said on state television that Holt was the CIA's top spy in Latin America.

On Saturday, a beaming Lacava could be seen in a video boarding the Venezuelan government plane that transported Holt to Washington wearing aviator glasses and a dark suit.

The White House learned from Corker on Friday of Holt's impending release, according to a USA official who has closely followed Holt's plight and spoke on condition of anonymity to describe the private talks. "We extend our special thanks to Senator Bob Corker, Senator Orrin Hatch, Senator Mike Lee, Representative Mia Love, and all the other members of Congress who have worked on behalf of the Holt family over the past two years and helped to make this day a reality", he said.

"I'm just overwhelmed with gratitude for you guys, for everything that you've done", Holt said, noting it was "very, very hard two years". "Not really the great vacation that I was looking for ..." "I'm just so grateful for what you guys have done and for thinking about me, and caring about me, just a normal person".

Fear of President Trump's commitment and decisiveness to help our people was the fundamental pivotal in the Holt case, and not what Senator Corker wrongly concluded, that "there are people who really want to affect the relationship in a good way" in the Venezuelan regime. President Donald Trump found out Friday that Holt would be released, said the official, who was not authorized to speak publicly and requested anonymity. "You've gone through a lot - more than most people could endure".

The Venezuelan government said Holt and his wife were freed in a goodwill gesture to the US, a measure that surprised some knowing the combative history between the two nations.

The release of Holt, a Mormon missionary from Utah, comes despite deepening U.S. Trump said in a tweet.

"We are on our way home", Mr Corker tweeted.

The president used the opportunity to target the previous administration and boast about the other prisoners his administration has freed since he took office, including the three men earlier this month who were let go by North Korea. And they were at his wife's apartment on the outskirts of Caracas after the wedding and got caught up in an anti-gang raid.

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Holt and his wife were being held at a prison in Caracas known as the Helicoide where the Sebin keeps political prisoners.

"As part of. the peace and reconciliation being presented by President Maduro, he ordered the liberation of the American Joshua Holt and his wife", Rodriguez said at a Saturday news conference at the presidential palace.

"Pastor Brunson, I hope you can hear us, we'll be helping you", Trump said.

Now, Laurie Holt said she can't wait to sit down with her son.

Saturday's outcome, Hatch said, resulted from work across two presidential administrations and with diplomatic contacts, ambassadors and Maduro himself. She said her son has suffered numerous health problems in jail, including kidney stones and respiratory problems.

"We could nearly write a book about the past 48 hours", Corker said. He was so badly treated that the USA government was trying to get him released on medical grounds.

They also ask to be allowed to meet Holt and his wife before making any public statements.

In a statement Sunday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo nodded to the efforts of those who had followed Holt's plight.

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