Clashes rock Venezuela as Guaido urges opposition uprising
May 02, 2019, 00:34
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Meanwhile Moscow has also handed the country some $17billion in loans, underwritten by the oil reserves on which Maduro sits - which are the largest anywhere in the world. Maduro's military has responded as well and has targeted the protestors.
Flanked by top military commanders, Defence Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez condemned Guaido's move as a "terrorist" act and "coup attempt" that was bound to fail like past uprisings.
"If he does get some degree of participation from labor movements, then that can be an additional feather in his cap", said Risa Grais-Targow, the Latin America director at Eurasia Group consultancy in Washington, adding that the march would be "a significant barometer of his support and capacity to mobilize".
Detained in 2014 for leading a previous round of anti-government unrest, Lopez said he had been released from house arrest by security forces adhering to an order from Guaido.
At least one person, a 24-year-old, was killed in the central state of Aragua as protests spread, while more than 100 were injured around the country.
On Fox & Friends, just minutes before the CNN interview, Bolton had been asked by host Brian Kilmeade if U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo or Trump had spoken to the Russians.
On Tuesday, Lopez appeared on an overpass by the La Carlota air base, joined by Guaido and several dozen soldiers who had disavowed Maduro.
White House National Security Advisor John Bolton told reporters Wednesday that "all options" were on the table for the U.S. response to Venezuela, and that the military was "ready to go".
Some people were seen waving flags of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela and the nation as they shouted slogans in support of Mr Maduro.
Flanked by uniformed men, Padrino said in a broadcast that the armed forces would continue to defend the constitution and "legitimate authorities", and that military bases were operating as normal. Military action is possible.
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Pompeo said Tuesday that Maduro was set to leave the country for Cuba but apparently was talked out of it by the Russians.
Soldiers backing Guaido wore blue armbands to demonstrate their allegiance to the opposition leader - recognized as interim president by more than 50 countries - but there appeared to be few of them.
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