The President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro has asked all the United States (U.S.) diplomats to leave the country before 72 hours. The decision came after the U.S. President, Donald Trump recognized opposition leader and Head of National Assembly, Juan Guaido as the Interim President of Venezuela.
On Wednesday, January 23, 2019, Guaido, took an oath swearing himself as the Interim President, before his supporters.
Venezuela is facing a huge political turmoil with Nicholas Maduro commencing his second term as the President of Venezuela on January 10, 2019. The development comes in the wake of a widely-boycotted election last year. Besides, many foreign Governments have also refused to recognize Maduro as the President of Venezuela. Maduro has been condemned for shortages of basic items such as medicine and food. According to the National Assembly, the annual inflation rate reached 1,300,000% in the 12 months to November 2018.
The constitution of Venezuela says that if the Presidency is determined to be vacant, new elections should be called within a span of 30 days and the Head of the Congress should assume the Presidency in the meantime. However, the pro-government Supreme Court has ruled all actions taken by congress as null and void.
Speaking on his decision of breaking ties with the U.S., Maduro said, “We cannot accept the invasive policies of the empire, the United States, the policies of Donald Trump”. He further added, “Venezuela is a land of liberators. We will not surrender.”
However, the U.S. State Department has said, “The United States does not recognize the Maduro regime as the Government of Venezuela. Accordingly, the United States does not consider former president Nicolas Maduro to have the legal authority to break diplomatic relations with the United States or to declare our diplomat’s persona non grata.”
Thousands of Venezuelans draped in their national flag have taken to streets to demonstrate their anger against Maduro. Calling him usurper, dictator and murderer, the civilians are demanding his resignation.
In the meantime, 3 lawyers have requested the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to grant precautionary measures to safeguard Guaido, his wife and his daughter. The Human Rights Body of the Organization of American States has the authority to accept such requests in order to protect the concerned persons from any suffering.
For the records, Canada, Columbia, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Peru and Brazil have also recognized Guaido as their President. Turkey, Cuba and Bolivia have extended support to Maduro.