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European allies recognise Juah Guiado as Venezuelan president

05 February 2019

Guaido allies plan to take a large quantity of food and medicine donated by the United States, multilateral organizations and non-profit groups across the Colombian border into the Venezuelan state of Tachira this week, according to a person directly involved in the effort.

President Maduro also had choice words for Washington's transatlantic allies, describing Europe's ultimatum to hold new elections as "the stuff of empires, of colonial times".

A statement from the PMO says Trudeau talked to Juan Guaido about the need for countries to send a clear message about "the illegitimacy of the Maduro regime" and to ensure that Venezuela has free and fair presidential elections.

He said Spain, which has a sizable Venezuelan community, also is working on a humanitarian aid program for Venezuela, where shortages of basic items are acute.

Theresa May spoke by phone with her Spanish counterpart Sanchez on Sunday about the situation in Venezuela, the Prime Minister's official spokesman told a media briefing in Westminster. Furthermore, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian stated that Guaido had the ability and the legitimacy to organize new presidential elections.

"This is a pivotal moment for the people of Venezuela - we are observing a widespread rejection of the Maduro regime's illegitimate claim to power following fraudulent elections last May", he said.

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"We aren't going to hand Venezuela over", said the Venezuelan president. Moscow has labeled the attempts by other countries to legitimize the usurpation of power in Venezuela as meddling into the country's internal affairs, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday.

What started as a trickle has turned into a flow of European Union countries who have now officially declared Guaido as interim president.

Canada and the Lima Group have backed Guaido, the opposition leader who's the head of Venezuela's legislature, as the legitimate replacement for socialist leader Nicolas Maduro.

"We don't accept ultimatums from anyone", Maduro said in a defiant interview with Spanish television channel La Sexta carried out last week and broadcast on Sunday.

Any move to significantly revamp the voting rules on foreign policy would be hugely controversial in countries such as Italy and Greece, which have repeatedly blocked EU-wide initiatives in this area.

"Venezuela won't be governed from Madrid", he added.

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In an interview with Spanish journalist Jordi Évole, Venezuela's president cited the Bible and past USA military debacles in an attempt to dissuade Washington from taking military action against Caracas.

"The United States wants to return to the 20th century of military coups, subordinate puppet governments and the looting of resources", he said.

In an interview that aired Monday with Italy's Sky TG24 he said that he had written Pope Francis asking for help in fostering dialogue with the opposition. "I tend to be an optimist; in this case, I do not have particularly positive expectations", European Union foreign-policy chief Federica Mogherini told reporters on Friday in Bucharest, as she announced the bloc could consider new sanctions against Maduro.

Maduro accused Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, of having taken "a bad decision" in recognising Guaido. It aims to facilitate dialogue and is due to hold its first meeting in Uruguay on Thursday.

The letter states "I am at the service of the cause of Christ", Maduro said, "and with this spirit I have asked for his help".

Two opposition rivals with a good chance of winning were barred from standing, while food handouts and other subsidies to hungry Venezuelans were linked with political support.

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European allies recognise Juah Guiado as Venezuelan president