Toronto, January 31: Amid Venezuela’s ongoing political and economic crisis, which has sent reverberations across the world, opposition leader Juan Guaido who declared himself president has not ruled out accepting help from foreign nations in his fight to overthrow current president Nicolas Maduro.
Speaking to CNN, Guaido said the Venezuelan people want to end President Nicolas Maduro's dictatorship with "whatever pressure is necessary" but he personally hoped the situation did not come to that. "Here in Venezuela we are doing everything we can to put pressure, so that we don't have to come to a scenario that no one would wish to have." "We are trying to restore the sovereignty of this country, to restore the liberty and democracy of Venezuela," he added.
Guaido has been recognised as Venezuela’s president by the U.S., UK, and EU countries. The European Parliament has voted to recognise Juan Guaido as de facto head of Venezuela with EU politicians voting 429 in favour to 104 against, at a special session in Brussels on Thursday to recognise the opposition figure as interim leader.
Guaido said he had even received a phone call from US President Donald Trump who promised him all possible support but there is no clarity if this means armed support as well. The Pentagon has refused to rule out military intervention on Venezuela’s border. Patrick Shanahan, the acting defence secretary, was asked repeatedly whether John Bolton had ordered a deployment of troops. "I’m not commenting on it,” he said. “I haven't discussed that with Secretary Bolton."
Guaido is also in talks with Venezuela’s military leaders who are currently supporting Nicolas Maduro prop up his government. He said, "We're asking that the armed forces be on the side of the constitution which is very different from it being a coup here in Venezuela.” He has promised to conduct immediate elections and simply hold the position of president until there is a transition government in place.