Written by Reuters
25 Jan, 2019 | 7:09 am
REUTERS – Venezuela will close its embassy and all consulates in the United States, President Nicolas Maduro said on Thursday (January 24), one day after he broke off diplomatic relations in response to U.S. recognition of an opposition leader as interim president.
In a speech at the country’s Supreme Court, Maduro added that he agreed with a call by Mexico and Uruguay for dialogue between Venezuela‘s government and opposition for a resolution to the South American country’s political crisis.
Earlier this week, opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself interim president with the blessing of the Trump administration and conservative governments in Latin America. That prompted Maduro, Venezuela‘s leader since 2013, to break relations with the United States.
Guaido’s swearing-in was the opposition’s boldest challenge yet to the long-ruling Socialist Party and has given Maduro’s adversaries an unprecedented diplomatic platform to press for change in a nation dogged by hyperinflation, rising malnutrition and political conflict.
Backing for him has come principally from the Western hemisphere. Venezuelan allies including Russia and Turkey – both important commercial partners – criticized Guaido’s rise as a sign of U.S. interference.
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