There was an attempt of a coup d’état in Venezuela. The reason is as follows: since 2017 because of hyperinflation and impoverishment of the population against the then President of the country Nicolas Maduro, various protests were held, which were immediately stopped by the army and security forces. In December 2018, the presidential election was held, in which victory with a result of 68% was obtained by Nicolas Maduro. A significant part of the opposition boycotted the election and did not recognize their results. Similarly, the US, European Union, and most Latin American states did not recognize the reelection of Maduro.
Nevertheless, on January 10, 2019, the Maduro inauguration took place for the second presidential term, which should end in 2025. And just in a week, January 16, the country launched mass protests against the inauguration of Maduro.
New self-proclaimed president
On January 23, President of the National Assembly of Venezuela and opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself acting as the President of the country. According to DW, it happened in Caracas during the many-thousandth protest action against the incumbent president, Nicolas Maduro. “I swear to formally assume the national executive powers as acting president of Venezuela,” Guaido said.
The world was divided in its support
Shortly thereafter, the United States President Donald Trump said that the United States will recognize Guaido as an acting President of Venezuela. Trump said the United States would continue to blame Maduro’s illegitimate regime for “any threats that it can make for the security of the people of Venezuela.” And US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged Maduro to resign and assured Guaido of US support in the formation of a transitional government and about elections.
The representatives of the Governments of Canada, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Argentina, Paraguay and Costa Rica subsequently declared Guaido as the interim head of the state. The EU also supported Guaido.
“The EU fully supports the national assembly as the democratically-elected institution whose powers need to be restored and respected. The civil rights, freedom and safety of all members of the National Assembly, including Juan Guaidó, need to be observed and fully respected”, – says Federica Mogherini, the head of EU diplomacy
In turn, Maduro was supported in Turkey, Russia and Mexico. “The developments in Venezuela show very well how progressive Western society really treats international law, sovereignty and non-interference into internal affairs of other states, by manually changing the power there,” said Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia.
“Our president called an extended Turkey’s support to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and said ‘My brother Maduro! Stand tall, we are with you,” – said the spokesman of the Turkish President Ibrahim Kalin.
Who is Juan Guaido?
The current speaker of Venezuela is only 35 years old. According to UNIAN, a politician was born and raised in a large family. His parents – a teacher and a pilot of the airline. Guaido received an engineer education, after receiving a diploma he studied at George Washington University in the United States.
During his studies, Juan Guaido became an active participant in the student political movement, who actively protested against the decision of the government not to renew the broadcasting license for RCTV’s independent television network. His group also protested against the policy of the Government of Hugo Chávez. In 2009, Guaido became one of the founders of the People’s Will party. In the 2010 parliamentary elections, the politician was elected as an alternative federal deputy, and by the results of the 2015 elections he received a full mandate in the National Assembly. In 2018 Guaido became the leader of the parliamentary opposition.
In December 2018 Guaido was elected as a Speaker of the Venezuelan Parliament. After the inauguration of President Maduro on January 10, his confrontation with the ruling regime intensified. On January 13, the opposition leader was detained by SEBIN employees – the State Security Service of Venezuela. Nevertheless, the authorities dismissed him in 45 minutes.
What does Maduro want?
Maduro demands the cessation of diplomatic relations with the United States. He urged his supporters and the armed forces to resist the seizure of power “at any price”, write Fakty. He said the enemies want to steal oil, gas, and gold from Venezuela and manage the country from Washington. Many people now expect that Maduro will send Guaido and other opposition leaders to prison. Moreover, the army and security forces continue to support the legitimate president.
Variants of the course of events
If Maduro does not act and does not renounce power, and will struggle to resist Guaido or order him to arrest, then the countries that have recognized the proclamation of the latter as their president, and this primarily concerns the United States, will have to react somehow. In this case, there may be an increase in oil sanctions to economically squeeze Maduro’s regime.
If the army goes to the side of the opposition, then with the support of the United States, Colombia and Brazil in Venezuela, a military operation to completely destroy Maduro and his followers may begin. On the other hand, it is not beneficial for the United States to draw itself into another military conflict. Do not forget about Russia, which can use “force” to “support” Maduro. According to economists, Russia will lose $ 20 billion in annual revenues from the change of power in Venezuela. Obviously, Putin does not want it. It looks like Venezuela may begin a new big game, which, first of all, local residents will suffer from.