Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said on Wednesday that he had ordered an investigation over US spying claims on Venezuela’s state oil company workers for a decade.
Maduro, citing a reported leak by whistleblower Edward Snowden, published via ‘’The Incercept’’ website and said that the National Security Agency had spied on top officials at state oil company PDVS.
"The oil industry is the backbone of the Venezuelan economy," Maduro said on state television.
"The US empire for a long time ... has intended to sabotage the oil industry and defeat the (Venezuelan) government, in order to steal the oil."
Both the US embassy in Caracas and the State Department in Washington have not responded to requests for comment.
Maduro said on national television that he had ordered investigation and the delivery of a letter of protest to the US charge d'affaires. The US and Venezuela have not had ambassadors for their capitals since 2010.
"We cannot accept this," said Maduro. "It is offensive, a violation of international law."
“I have ordered our foreign minister to begin an integral review of our relation with the US government,” added Maduro.