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US says time for new government in Venezuela

AP  |  Abu Dhabi 

The ramped up its criticism of Venezuelan leader on Saturday with an explicit call for the formation of a new government in the country.

The State Department said in a statement that it stood behind the of Venezuela's opposition-run congress, Juan Guaido, who said on Friday he is prepared to step into the nation's presidency temporarily to replace Maduro.

The statement was the latest in a barrage of attacks on Maduro, whose inauguration to a new term as on Thursday has been widely denounced as illegitimate.

"The people of deserve to live in freedom in a democratic society governed by the rule of law," State Department said.

"It is time to begin the orderly transition to a new government.

We support the National Assembly's call for all Venezuelans to work together, peacefully, to restore constitutional government and build a better future."

"The government will continue to use the full weight of US economic and diplomatic power to press for the restoration of democracy in Venezuela," he said in the statement, which was released in where is currently travelling as part of a nine-nation tour of the

Pompeo spoke to Guaido earlier in the week shortly after the 35-year-old was elected to lead the

Guaido said he was willing to become when speaking to an energised crowd blocking a busy street a day after Maduro's inauguration.

But he said he would need support from the public, the armed forces and the international community before trying to form a transitional government to hold new elections to replace Maduro.

The of the Organisation of American States, Luis Almagro, responded quickly, sending out a tweet recognizing Guaido as Venezuela's interim

US then praised Guaido, athough he didn't echo Almagro's step of calling him the interim

Bolton reiterated the US position that the May election that gave Maduro a second term was "not free, fair or credible" and said "we support the courageous decision" of Guaido's declaration "that Maduro does not legitimately hold the country's presidency."


Guaido asked Venezuelans to mass in a nationwide demonstration on January 23, a historically important date for Venezuelans - the day when a mass uprising overthrew dictator in 1958.

The constitution assigns the presidency to the of the if Maduro is illegitimate.

But the overall military so far has remained firmly behind Maduro, despite some reports of small-scale attempts at revolt.

A once wealthy oil nation, is gripped by a growing crisis of relentless inflation, and mass migration.

Seventeen Latin American countries, the and denounced as illegitimate in a measure adopted Thursday at the OAS in

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, January 12 2019. 16:25 IST
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