February 25, 2019

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Venezuela disaster: President Maduro’s ‘days numbered’ – Mike Pompeo

Opponents of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro clash with members of Venezuelan police on the border between Brazil and Venezuela. Photo: 23 February 2019 Image copyright

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Saturday noticed lethal confrontations at border crossings as volunteers tried to gather help

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has stated Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro’s “days are numbered” after lethal clashes over humanitarian help.

“Picking exact days is difficult. I’m confident that the Venezuelan people will ensure that Maduro’s days are numbered,” Mr Pompeo informed CNN.

Two individuals died in Saturday’s clashes between civilians and troops loyal to Mr Maduro, who blocked help deliveries.

Self-declared interim President Juan Guaidó stated Mr Maduro should resign.

  • In photos: Border clashes
  • How the day unfolded

Mr Guaidó, who has been recognised as interim chief by greater than 50 international locations, has referred to as on different nations to contemplate “all measures” to oust Mr Maduro after opposition-led efforts to usher in help descended into clashes.

He additionally stated he would attend a gathering of largely Latin American international locations in Colombia on Monday, regardless of being below a journey ban imposed by Mr Maduro. US Vice-President Mike Pence will characterize Washington on the talks in Bogota.

A senior White House official stated on Sunday that Mr Pence was planning to announce “concrete steps” and “actions” in addressing the disaster on the talks on Monday, Reuters information company reported.

Meanwhile, Colombia and Brazil stated they might intensify strain on Mr Maduro to relinquish energy. US President Donald Trump has not dominated out an armed response to the Venezuela disaster.

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Venezuelan police prevented help crossing the Simon Bolivar International Bridge

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Protesters on the Francisco de Paula Santander bridge on the border between Cucuta, Colombia, and Venezuela

Separately on Sunday, a ship carrying US help from Puerto Rico to Venezuela was compelled to dock on the small Dutch territory island of Curaçao after it was intercepted by the Venezuelan navy off the northern coast, AFP information company studies.

The vessel was reportedly loaded with 9 cargo containers stuffed with meals and medication.

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Getty Images

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The provide ship that was compelled to dock on the island of Curaçao

Mr Maduro, who says he’s the official president and is backed by key financial allies together with Russia, Cuba and China, has warned that deliveries of overseas help would open the best way for US army intervention.

Mr Guaidó, who declared himself interim president final month, argues that alleged irregularities with the nation’s 2018 election render Mr Maduro’s management illegitimate.

What occurred on the border on Saturday?

Venezuela’s opposition had supposed to peacefully carry help vehicles over the borders with Brazil and Colombia.

Mr Guaidó had pledged that the help would come into the nation on Saturday. In response, Mr Maduro partly closed the nation’s borders.

Venezuelans civilians tried to cross with a view to get to the shops of meals and medication, however the try rapidly descended into bloody violence.

Soldiers opened fireplace towards civilians, utilizing a mix of dwell ammunition and rubber bullets.

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A demonstrator runs into barbed wire strung throughout a avenue in Ureña

  • Venezuela disaster – in 9 charts

At least two individuals together with a 14-year-outdated boy have been killed, human rights teams stated.

There have been additionally studies that some help stockpiled on the border had been burned. Mr Pompeo described the studies as “sickening”.

“Our deepest sympathies to the families of those who have died due to these criminal acts,” he wrote on Twitter. “We join their demand for justice.”

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Media captionVenezuela-Colombia border turns violent

At least 60 troopers had defected by late Saturday, based on Colombia’s migration service, however many of the army appeared to nonetheless be loyal to Mr Maduro.

Video footage confirmed Venezuelan troopers crashing their armoured automobiles into the border with Colombia with a view to defect.

Another video posted on social media appeared to show four soldiers publicly denouncing the president and announcing their support for Guaidó.

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Media captionThe second Venezuelan troops crashed by way of border into Colombia

Mr Guaidó promised the defectors amnesty in the event that they joined the “right side of history”.

Late on Saturday, Colombia’s authorities estimated the variety of injured at border crossings to be about 300.

Amnesty International described using dwell ammunition by Venezuelan troops as a criminal offense below worldwide legislation.

How has Maduro reacted?

President Maduro has ignored worldwide calls to carry new elections. He has accused Mr Guaidó of being an “American pawn” and an “imperialist beggar”.

As protests bought below approach at Venezuela’s borders, Mr Maduro staged a rally in Caracas.

“Take your hands off Venezuela, Donald Trump,” he informed a cheering crowd.

The US is main the worldwide effort to strain Mr Maduro, and has carried out a raft of monetary sanctions towards his authorities.

How did we get up to now?

The humanitarian help stockpiled in Colombia and Brazil is on the centre of a stand-off between Mr Maduro and Mr Guaidó that goes again to Mr Maduro’s disputed re-election in 2018.

For a number of years Venezuela has been within the grip of a political and financial disaster.

An out-of-management inflation charge has seen costs soar, leaving many Venezuelans struggling to afford primary gadgets.

At least 2.7 million individuals have fled Venezuela since 2015.

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