GM halts operations in Venezuela after plant seizure
- Firm calls seizure 'total disregard' and 'illegal'

General Motors (GM) halted all its operations in Venezuela after its plant was seized in the country, the American automaker said in a statement Thursday.

"Yesterday, [General Motors Venezuela's] plant was unexpectedly taken by the public authorities, preventing normal operations. In addition, other assets of the company, such as vehicles, have been illegally taken from its facilities," the statement said.

GM called the seizure as a "total disregard" and said it caused "irreparable damage to the company".

The firm, which represents more than 55 percent of the auto parts industry in Venezuela, said it will take legal action within and outside of the country.

GM's seized plant has 2,678 workers, while the company employs another 3,900 people among its 79 dealers across Venezuela.

Nationalization has been common in Venezuela under the country's former President Hugo Chavez.

That policy did not change much under the current President Nicolas Maduro, who often blamed the U.S. for his country's economic problems.

GM's stock price has not been negatively affected Thursday after the recent developments. Shares of the company was trading at $34.29 at 1800 GMT, after closing $33.79 per share on Wednesday.

By Ovunc Kutlu in New York

Anadolu Agency



21 Apr,2017