Pope Says Vatican Open to Mediating in Venezuela if Both Sides Ask

Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez delivers a statement at the Moncloa Palace in Madrid Spain Monday Feb. 4 2019. Sanchez told reporters we are working for the return of full democracy in Venezuela, as Spain France and Sweden join countrie
UK and other European countries recognise Guaidó as Venezuela's leader

07 February, 2019

The Tienditas International Bridge was blocked a day prior by the Venezuelan National Guard with a giant orange tanker, two large blue containers and makeshift fencing near the border town of Cucuta, Colombian officials said.

Meanwhile, Juan Guaidó, the Venezuelan opposition leader recognized as the country's interim president by the USA and several major European countries, has ordered Venezuela's congress to appoint new boards at PDVSA and its US refining unit Citgo, Reuters reports.

The crisis in Venezuela came to a boiling point when Maduro was recently sworn in for a second term as Venezuela's president, despite global criticism that his re-election is illegitimate.

Shipments aree also coming from Venezuelan companies overseas, Colombia, Canada and Germany. Taking a jibe at the US President, he said: "So we have to go through a war to reconsider our relationship and our respect?"

But Trump has appeared to relish the fight against President Nicolas Maduro, a leftist firebrand fond of criticizing United States foreign policy who presides over a crumbling economy in which food and basic supplies are scarce and millions have fled to neighboring countries.

"This is a pivotal moment for the people of Venezuela - we are observing a widespread rejection of the Maduro regime's illegitimate claim to power following fraudulent elections last May", Trudeau said in his opening remarks before the meeting.

Immediately, the United States was the first to recognise Guaido as the President and also promised humanitarian aid to Venezuela.

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Venezuela's pro-democracy movement has welcomed the decision by Canada and its allies to urge its country's military to switch allegiance and support opposition leader Juan Guaido as the true leader of their country.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn - a long-standing admirer of Nicholas Maduro's socialist predecessor Hugo Chavez - has strongly condemned outside interference in Venezuela "whether from the U.S. or anywhere else".

Guadio, head of Venezuela's National Assembly, last month declared himself to be the South American country's interim ruler. Why should the European Union be giving ultimatums to a country?,' he said in an interview with Spanish television broadcast late on Sunday.

Pope Francis on Tuesday expressed willingness for the Vatican to mediate Venezuela's mounting crisis if both sides seek it. Russia, which along with China has backed Maduro in the crisis, underscored its view that the crisis can be resolved only with negotiations between the government and opposition.

Pompeo says Venezuela's military has barricaded the bridge, blocking aid under orders from Maduro.

Pressure is growing on Maduro to step down after more than a dozen European Union nations, including Britain, Germany and France, on Monday joined the United States, Canada and a group of Latin American countries in recognizing Guaido as Venezuela's legitimate leader.

"This is already quite advanced, I hope that next week it can be announced by our representative in the United States", Paparoni said, though he did not give details about the nature of the USA -based fund or the financial institution involved.

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