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US offers sanctions relief to Venezuelan military who betray Maduro

07 February 2019

The Venezuelan military has attempted to block humanitarian aid from entering the country by barricading a bridge at a key border crossing, Colombian officials said Wednesday.

In the meantime, pressure is building for Nicolas Maduro to resign amid Venezuela's economic crisis and as other nations, including the US, recognize Guaido as the country's president.

The spokesman for Guterres, Stéphane Dujarric, said that Guterres "supports the efforts of the worldwide community that will help find a political solution" to the situation in Venezuela.

USA officials told Reuters aid was on its way this week.

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

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According to official data, about four million people already had left Venezuela, the ministry said, noting that inflation was about to reach 1.7 million per cent.

After President Nicolas Maduro rejected an ultimatum to call snap presidential elections, Spain, Germany, France and Britain led a run of European countries in individually recognizing the young National Assembly leader on Monday and called on him to organize free and fair polls soon. "We have to come to buy food because we can not even get cooking oil and eggs in Venezuela". It is unclear how the supplies will get into Venezuela without Maduro's blessing and cooperation of the Venezuelan military, which has remained loyal to his government and is stationed on the Venezuelan side of the border. "Sometimes they despair but we can't do anything, it's so sad", said a patrolman located a few yards (meters) from the border.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday that the crisis in Venezuela could only be solved by getting the authorities and the opposition to talk to each other, the RIA news agency reported.

"From today, we will spare no effort in helping all Venezuelans achieve freedom, prosperity and harmony", Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said, referring to the decision to recognise Guaido as president.

Guaido is an opposition lawmaker who declared himself as the "interim president" of Venezuela on January 23 in violation of the country's constitution.

European allies recognise Juah Guiado as Venezuelan president
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". Maduro accused Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, of having taken "a bad decision" in recognising Guaido.

Maduro, in response, announced the severing of diplomatic and political ties with the United States.

Maduro's government, overseeing an economic collapse that has prompted three million Venezuelans to flee the oil-rich country, lashed out at the European Union nations and said the move would affect relations with Caracas.

On February 4, General Francisco Esteban Yanez Rodriguez, a top Venezuelan air force officer, pledged his support to opposition leader Juan Guaido.

On Monday, Maduro appealed to the "independent governments of the world" to reject the US -backed efforts to oust him from power.

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US offers sanctions relief to Venezuelan military who betray Maduro