U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice accused on Wednesday Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez of destroying his country economically and politically.
"I do believe that the president of Venezuela is really, really destroying his own country, economically, politically," Rice told lawmakers on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs in Congress.
Rice's remarks echoed criticism by the U.S. State Department when Chavez announced his plan last month to nationalize electrical and telecommunications companies.
The U.S. State Department slammed Chavez nationalization plan as "a well-worn path that history has shown does not usually benefit the population of the country in question."
In addition to accusation against Chavez's economic policy, the U.S. government also said that Chavez poses a threat to democracies both in Venezuela and Latin America.
The United States and Venezuela have been exchanging verbal fire for years. Chavez and his government always rejects U.S. accusation. Chavez called on American people to impeach U.S. President George W. Bush for lacking even the bare minimum of skills needed to rule.