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Maduro accuses ex-Colombian leader of plotting assassination

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (L) takes part in a traditional May Day rally in Caracas on May 1, 2013
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (L) takes part in a traditional May Day rally in Caracas on May 1, 2013. Maduro has accused Colombian ex-president Alvaro Uribe of plotting his assassination with sectors of the right wing he says are seeking his overth

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro has accused Colombian ex-president Alvaro Uribe of plotting his assassination with sectors of the right wing he says are seeking his overthrow.

Uribe, responding on his Twitter account, dismissed the charges as "immature."

Since being proclaimed the winner of an election to replace the late Hugo Chavez April 14, Maduro has made a series of claims of a right-wing plot to overthrow his government but has offered little evidence.

The accusations have come amid rising tensions over the results of the vote, which are being contested by opposition leader Henrique Capriles, who alleges it was stolen.

Maduro leveled the accusations against Uribe, who often butted heads with Chavez for allegedly allowing Colombian guerrillas to operate from Venezuelan territory, in a speech late Friday to employees of the Caracas metro.

"Uribe is behind a plan to assassinate me. Uribe is an assassin. I have sufficient elements that he is conspiring, there are sectors of the Venezuelan right in communication with him for that," Maduro said.

He claimed that armed men were ready to enter Venezuela through a jungle-covered region to launch an attack on him.

He also repeated his earlier accusations that two former US diplomats -- Roger Noriega and Otto Reich -- were involved in the plotting. They have denied it.

"To the immature accusation by the dictatorship crazed by fraud and violence, only one response: that the elections be repeated," Uribe said in a tweet.

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