Venezuela’s interim President Juan Guaido is doing his part to restore democracy to his nation, after President Nicolas Maduro’s socialist rule has led to the collapse of the Venezuelan economy.
US President Donald Trump instantly saw Guaido as a fit leader for Venezuela, but EU members were hesitant to accept him due to his self-declaration as temporary leader.
But now, eight European nations are backing the leader of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, accepting him wholeheartedly as Maduro’s successor.
New backers for new Venezuelan leader
The nations who came on board are Britain, France, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Denmark, Austria and Germany. Their move for support came after the eight-day deadline for Maduro to call a new election expired, according to AP.
‘I recognise the president of Venezuela’s assembly, Mr Juan Guaido, as president in charge of Venezuela,’ Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez explicitly stated.
Maduro sees this as an act of defiance, believing Europe’s elite are only following Trump’s agenda for their own personal gain.
But comments from other leaders point to a different motive:
‘Venezuelans have the right to express themselves freely and democratically. France recognizes @jguaido as ‘interim president’ to implement an electoral process,’ President Emmanuel Macron said on Twitter.
And British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said via social media, ‘UK alongside European allies now recognises @jguaido as interim constitutional president until credible elections can be held.’
‘The oppression of the illegitimate, kleptocratic Maduro regime must end.’
Many Latin American nations as well as Canada are looking at maintaining pressure on Maduro.
And Switzerland, while not specifically recognising Guaido as the new president, still showed concern and are pushing for a ‘constitutional solution’ and protection for Guaido.
The ones still on Maduro’s side
The 56-year-old Maduro replaced Hugo Chavez back in 2013, who died from cancer. He has since presided over an economic collapse and exodus of three million Venezuelans, AP reports.
Critics say incompetent policies and corruption under both Maduro and Chavez have impoverished a once-wealthy nation and yet have also brutally counteracted any dissent.
Maduro refuses to take responsibility, instead blaming an ‘economic war’ led by the US for his country’s downfall, as well as accusing Washington of seeking a coup against him in order to secure Venezuela’s oil wealth.
But this is unlikely, considering the plunge in production under Maduro’s ruling.
Still, some are still backing Maduro. No surprises that Russia and China make this list, who have invested billions into Venezuela just to heighten their retaliation against the US.
Russia have said, according to AP, that it’s up to Venezuelan citizens to fix their domestic issues, not the president.
Why have one then? We ask.
Why not go democracy all the way?
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