VOA News - February 03, 2019 4:50 PM -
Struggle for Control of Venezuela Returns to Streets
"I decided at the time, "no" because so many really horrible things have been happening in Venezuela when you look at that country," Trump said of possible talks with Maduro.
"That was the wealthiest country of all in that part of the world which is a very important part of the world," Trump said in the interview that was taped Friday. "And now you look at the poverty and you look at the anguish and you look at the crime and you look at all of the things happening. So, I think the process is playing out - very, very big tremendous protests."
Pence Urges Support for 'Side of Freedom' in Venezuela
Maduro has called for early National Assembly elections. Guaido, as head of Congress, has standing to claim he is the country's legitimate leader.
Guaido was set to announce when humanitarian aid will be delivered to the crisis-ridden country.
He told supporters Saturday the opposition would start collecting humanitarian aid in Brazil, Colombia and an unnamed Caribbean island and called on the military to allow the aid into the country.
The United States has said it would transport aid to Venezuela at Guaido's request. But Maduro has refused to accept aid because he believes it opens the way for a U.S.-led military intervention.
Venezuela Sanctions, Amnesty Promise Attempt to Break Maduro-Military Bond
Major General Jorge Oropeza, former air force general commander, said later Saturday that he also recognized Guaido as acting president.
Top military leaders have helped Maduro survive mass demonstrations in recent years by jailing activists and repressing opposition protestors.
Guaido said in an interview with VOA Noticias he has offered "amnesty and guarantees" to high-ranking military officials as part of a broader effort to get "this usurpation to end." EMBED SHARE
It remains unclear how much military support there is for Guaido.
Jonathan Velasco, Venezuela's ambassador in Iraq, also joined the defectors Saturday.
Supporters of opposition leader Guaido and President Maduro participated in rival demonstrations in Caracas Saturday.
Thousands of Guaido's supporters, carrying flags and blowing horns, converged on a handful of locations around Caracas in support of his call for early elections and the establishment of a transitional government amid mounting global pressure for Maduro to step down. Guaido arrived at one of the rallies with his wife, Fabiana, and was quickly surrounded by exuberant supporters.
Pro-Maduro demonstrators took to the streets on the western side of Caracas to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Bolivarian revolution that led to the rise of socialist Hugo Chavez, Maduro's deceased predecessor. Maduro addressed the crowd, the first time he has appeared at a public rally since August 4.
Maduro called for parliamentary elections earlier than planned, repeated that he is the country's legitimate president and told the crowd, "I am very ashamed to see this group of opposition coup perpetrators" take orders from Washington.
The bottom line is for the people to regain their original, moral principles, which have intentionally been watered out over the past generations by our press, TV, and other media owned by the Illuminati/Bilderberger Group, corrupting our morals by making misbehavior acceptable to our society. Only in this way shall we conquer this oncoming wave of evil.
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