Venezuelan Foreign Minister Ali Rodriguez says his country will be successful in its bid to obtain one of the rotating seats on the U.N. Security Council, despite what he says is U.S. pressure on Latin American countries to oppose the candidacy.

Rodriguez made the prediction Thursday in an interview with the Caracas-based Telesur network. His comment came two days after the U.S. said it favors Guatemala over Venezuela in the race for the Council seat.

The Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday that the U.S. has been applying behind-the-scenes pressure to steer votes away from Venezuela.

The United States denies using pressure tactics to influence the election.

As a non-permanent member of the Security Council Venezuela would not have veto power. However, the newspaper says U.S. officials believe Venezuela could disrupt efforts to take action against Iran - if Tehran rejects the international offer of incentives to halt sensitive nuclear activities.

The Los Angeles Times reported also that Washington threatened to deny flight training to Chilean pilots for F-16 fighter jets if Santiago supports Venezuela. But the State Department denied that assertion.

Under U.N. rules, Latin American countries are to pick a country from the region to fill a rotating council seat that opens next year.

The government of Chilean President Michelle Bachelet has said Santiago has yet to make a decision on how it will vote on the matter.

Some information for this report was provided by AP .