Venezuela: Nicolas Maduro, Juan Guaido vie for military control


Yet Maduro sought to deflate tensions, for now at least, by backing off his earlier order to expel all diplomats.

The United States separately warned there would be a "significant response" if U.S. diplomats, Guaido or the opposition-controlled National Assembly were targeted with violence and intimidation. However, the power of the country we are talking about is in decline.

Russia, Belarus, Bolivia, Iran, Cuba, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Turkey voiced support for Maduro, while China called for resolving all differences peacefully and warned against foreign interference.

Maduro and opposition leader Juan Guaido, who last week declared himself interim president citing a fraudulent election, are both vying for control of Venezuela's military amid a growing crisis in the country. "Venezuela wants peace", he said. "All of Europe is bowing down to Donald Trump".

"Since August 2017, Canada has been working closely as a member of the Lima group, which is comprised of over a dozen Latin American countries and the Caribbean, to address the Venezuelan crisis", Freeland said.

That, coupled with uncertainty about how long the US government will stay open after Washington agreed to end a historic shutdown, dampened investor optimism, said Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut.

Maduro called on US diplomats to leave the country and Bolton repeated a previous warning that there would be a "significant response" should any USA citizens be harmed.

Marc Raimondi, a spokesperson for the Department of Justice National Security Division, said his division "was not worried" about espionage threats "at this point".

As theWall Street Journal reported on Friday, Bolton, Pompeo, and Vice President Mike Pence were all key players in talks with the Venezuelan opposition that culminated in Guaido's decision last week to declare himself "interim president".

More news: Barbora Krejcikova-Rajeev Ram Win Australian Open Mixed Doubles Title
More news: Kamala Harris makes stop at Penn Station after announcing presidential bid
More news: Suspect in Wisconsin Double-Murder, Kidnapping Case Due in Court Monday

"What do you think about using military force?"

It's not clear what security precautions Guaido is taking to avoid arrest.

The second, on Saturday, will be a "big national and global rally to back the support of the European Union and the ultimatum" from Britain, France, Germany, Portugal, Spain and the Netherlands that they would recognize Guaido as interim president unless Maduro calls elections by February 3.

Arreaza called the push for a new election "almost childlike".

"Mr. Pompeo is a spokesman for the country that threatens us".

A major oil producer, Venezuela has been wracked by hyper-inflation, food shortages and intense crime since Maduro came to power in 2013. "They sabotage us and try to destroy the economic system".

Crude oil production, the authority said, reached 11.7 million bpd as of December 2018, with exports at 2.4 million bpd on average during the same month, flat on November but a lot stronger than in the first months after the removal of the oil export moratorium.

Yet Maduro recently argued that America's involvement in the rebellion against him entails more than after-the-fact support.

But Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey, the senior Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, said the Trump administration should brief Congress on its moves against Maduro.