European Union nations recognise Guaido as Venezuela leader

Tuesday, 05 Feb, 2019

He added that Venezuela is being "threatened by the biggest powers in the world". Subsequently, Venezuela's incumbent President Nicolas Maduro blasted these actions as an attempted coup and said he was cutting diplomatic ties with the United States.

The coordinated recognition by a flood of European Union nations including Britain, Germany, France and Spain followed the expiration of an ultimatum for Maduro to call a new presidential election, aligning them with Washington and against Russian Federation and China.

"The coward government of Spain has made a awful decision in the history of relations between Spain and Venezuela".

She said the European Union will take part in a meeting with South American countries in Montevideo later this week "to try to find both a democratic and peaceful solution to the crisis in Venezuela".

Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez steps out of the Moncloa Palace in Madrid, Spain, September 12, 2018.

"If a military coup took place in Venezuela, Mr Pedro Sanchez, your hands will forever be stained with blood", he said. President Vladimir Putin has also accused the United States and its allies of "interference".

"If someday there'll be a coup; if there'll be a U.S. intervention of Venezuela, then, Senior Pedro Sanchez, your hands will be stained in blood forever and history will remember you as a puppet in service of Donald Trump's policy of interference", President Maduro said in an address, broadcast live on his Twitter page.

Italy's 5-Star Movement, which makes up half of the ruling coalition, dissented from the European stance, saying it would never recognise self-appointed leaders.

Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza accused the European Union of officially submitting to the U.S. strategy to overthrow the Venezuelan government.

On January 29, Washington slapped sanctions on the Venezuelan oil producer PDVSA and later transferred control of some of Venezuela's assets in USA banks to Guaido.

Already recognised by the United States, Canada, Australia and several Latin American countries, Guaido is trying to force the socialist leader from power so he can set up a transitional government and hold new elections.

Earlier on Monday, Mr Guaido announced that he was working on creating an worldwide aid coalition that would be delivered at three points yet to be determined.

Guaido told Corriere della Sera newspaper that the only way Venezuela could emerge from the crisis was via "radical change" and said he hoped Rome would back him.

The far-right League is, however, keen to see Maduro leave office.

Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that Germany, once the political circumstances allow it, would also consider providing humanitarian assistance worth €5 million ($5.7 million) to help ease the plight of Venezuelans who are suffering the effects of a country in economic free fall.

"Why would you want a repeat of Vietnam in Latin America?"

Here is a summary of whom key players are backing, after Guaido declared himself acting president on January 23 in defiance of the leftist Maduro.

Spain, France, Britain and Germany followed through on their promise.

They showed the most solidarity towards us and they are constantly monitoring events in Venezuela.

"Otherwise we are sentenced to death", he said.

"I ask the pope to put in his best effort, his will, to help on the path of dialogue".

"We don't accept ultimatums from anyone", Maduro said in a defiant interview with Spanish television channel La Sexta carried out last week and broadcast on Sunday.