Venezuela ROUNDUP: Guaido now seeks direct relationship with the U.S. Southern Command

venezuela guaiado

Imperialism is intensifying its interventionist activities in Venezuela with the help of its proxies. Its proxies are also seeking cooperation of U.S. armed forces.

Media reports said:

The situation in Venezuela has turned so bad for Juan Guaido, the U.S.-backed self-declared “interim president”, that the number of participants at his own rallies has diminished greatly over the last few days.

According to an AP report, only a few hundred people attended Guaido’s demonstration on Saturday.

In this situation, Guaido has become desperate.

Without the Venezuelan people or armed forces behind him, which he expected, he is now making plea to the U.S. to militarily intervene in Venezuela.

Guaido has ordered the setting up of a meeting with the U.S. Armed Forces to discuss “cooperation” in his efforts to oust Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro.

During a gathering of supporters in the upper middle class Caracas district of Las Mercedes on Saturday, Guaido informed that he was instructing his representative in the U.S., Carlos Vecchio, to establish a “direct relationship” with the U.S. Southern Command (SouthCom), which plans, oversees, and controls all US overt and covert military operations in Latin America and the Caribbean.

This announcement shows Guaido is relying on foreign military-led intervention to oust Maduro.

Guaido later also confirmed: His representative in the US will meet members of the U.S. Southern Command next week to discuss strategy for regime change in the Latin American country.

“The meeting will be held on Monday,” Guaido said at a press conference on Tuesday. “I understand it will be at the State Department, and our ambassador will tell us what is the result of that meeting.”

In a letter to US SouthCom chief Admiral Craig Faller Monday, Vecchio requested a meeting to discuss “strategic and operational” cooperation, alongside concerns over what he describes as “the [existing] presence of un-invited foreign forces” in Venezuela. No evidence for this claim was provided by Vecchio.

While SouthCom are yet to confirm if they will meet Guaido’s team, Faller had earlier tweeted that he looked forward to discussing how to “restore [the] constitutional order” in Venezuela and that his forces stood “ready.”

I would accept military intervention, says Guaido

Italian newspaper La Stampa published an interview with Guaido Friday, in which Guaido explained: “If the North Americans proposed a military intervention, I would probably accept it.”

Doomed to fail

The government of President Maduro, which has long accused the US of stopping at nothing to bring about a regime change, slammed Guaido for his efforts to entice foreign troops into a breach of Venezuela’s sovereignty.

Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez termed Guaido’s steps as “repulsive” and “doomed to fail.”

“We reject the letter by one of the coup leaders asking for military intervention in Venezuela, on behalf of a group of coup plotters who carry out terrorist activities to create confusion and destabilize our homeland,” Vice President Delcy Rodriguez noted earlier this week.

Recent polls suggest that over 86 percent of Venezuelans oppose a foreign-led military incursion into the country.

Incursion of U.S. Coast Guard vessel

On Saturday, Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino condemned what he said was an illegal incursion by a U.S. Coast Guard cutter into Venezuelan territorial waters.

The Venezuelan Navy and Air Force took action when the USCG James approached a distance of 13 nautical miles (15 miles) off Venezuela’s northern coast. The vessel changed course away from Venezuela’s coastline following a radio request to do so.

According to US Southern Command spokesperson Colonel Amanda Azubuike, the vessel was carrying out “a mission to intercept drugs.”

“I don’t know if other Republics would accept actions like these in their maritime jurisdiction, but we won’t,” Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez stated Saturday, describing the incident as a “provocation.”

“All operations of law enforcement in this place where the US vessel was correspond to Venezuela by international law. This was an armed coast guard patrolling these waters,” he went on to state.

In this maritime band and according to international law, the free passage of foreign ships is allowed, but Caracas has full sovereignty in political, migratory, border, sanitary, and fiscal matters, including law enforcement and “intercepting drugs.”

The USCG James is one of the most advanced patrol vessels in its fleet, carrying modern surveillance and reconnaissance equipment, as well as being able to serve as a command post for “complex law enforcement and national security missions involving the Coast Guard and numerous partner agencies.”

Countries reject intervention plan

Countries that have voiced support for Guaido have publicly rejected the possibility of intervention. These countries include Chile, Peru, Colombia, Spain and Canada.

More U.S. sanctions

The U.S. has imposed a new set of sanctions against Venezuela on Friday.

The latest measures added two private oil shipping firms, Monsoon Navigation Corporation and Serenity Maritime Limited based in the Marshall Islands and Liberia respectively, to the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) blacklist. Two Panamanian oil tankers associated with these firms, the Leon Dias Chemical and Ocean Elegance, were also named.

Amplify sanctions, Guaido calls on European countries

Guaido called on those European countries which recognize him as the “legitimate” president to “amplify” economic sanctions against Caracas this weekend, as well as urging assistance in international courts to oust Maduro.

Guaido urged European governments to grant “maximum legitimacy” to his appointed representatives.

However, European governments largely continue to have complete or partial diplomatic relations with the ambassadors named by the Maduro administration.

“We ask our allies in Europe to legitimize our representatives to the maximum for the consolidation of our government. In addition, we urge the European Union to extend sanctions against the regime as a measure to pressure to achieve a solution to the crisis,” Guiado tweeted.

Guaido called on the European Union to support his efforts to charge the Venezuelan Government with crimes against humanity.

The general had been recruited by the CIA

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the United States had recruited General Manuel Ricardo Cristopher Figuera, one of the masterminds behind the coup attempt of April 30, for more than a year, said President Maduro.

Maduro also revealed new details Friday about those responsible for the attempted coup this past April 30, supported and directed by the U.S.

He specifically referred to the participation of the former director of the Bolivarian National Intelligence Service (Sebin) General Manuel Ricardo Cristopher Figuera, who was expelled and demoted along with 54 other rebels.

The president indicated that after the investigations they were able to verify “that General Manuel Ricardo Cristopher had been recruited by the CIA more than a year ago. This Venezuelan justice will come sooner rather than later!”

The president also revealed that he was alerted to Cristopher Figuera’s intentions a week before he acted on them. In fact, on April 30, he was meant to be replaced by the Chief General Gustavo Gonzalez Lopez.

“It was General Padrino Lopez, Maikel Moreno and General Hernandez Dala who warned me of the strange behavior of this General who would be dismissed from office and arrested on Tuesday, 30 April at 9 am,” he said during a graduation speech at the 16th Victor’s Parade of the “Mision Ribas” in the halls of Miraflores Palace.

Russia supports Venezuelan people determining their future via political dialogue

The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met Tuesday in Sochi, Russia.

They discussed existing situation surrounding Venezuela, North Korea, Syria, Ukraine, Afghanistan and Iran.

At the Sochi meeting, the U.S. secretary encouraged the Russian administration to help oust democratically elected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

“The time has come for Maduro to leave power. We want Venezuelans to have the right to democracy. Chinese, Cuban or other forces have to stop supporting Maduro,” Pompeo said.

Lavrov asserted that his country’s stance on the Venezuelan domestic political impasse is based on the premise that “democracy is not established by force, (but by) dialogue and consideration of all issues by Venezuelans themselves, without ultimatums and without preconditions.”

The Russian minister said, “threats against Maduro’s administration, which are heard from U.S. officials and Guaido, who constantly reminds us of his right to invite an armed intervention from abroad, have nothing in common with democracy.”​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

The Russian top diplomat also said that he would not go into details about “how things are with democracy in Iraq and Libya and elsewhere, where those attempts to overthrow took place and did not lead to anything good.”​​​​​​​

Lavrov said the Venezuelan domestic issues should be resolved using the Montevideo Mechanism dialogues proposed previously by Mexico and Uruguay.

“Russia is in favor of the [Venezuelan] people determining their own future and, in that sense, it is of the utmost importance that all the country’s political forces initiate a dialogue among them, as several countries of the region have also requested within the Montevideo Mechanism framework. The Venezuela’s government, as [President] Maduro has assured, is also willing to take part in such dialogue.”


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