European Union powers recognize Guaido as Venezuelan leader, demand free and fair elections

UK recognises Juan Guaido as interim President of Venezuela

No mention was made of the current situation: millions of Venezuelans don't have enough to eat, there are massive shortages of basic medicines and the country's inflation rate is slated to rise to 10 million per cent this year. Trump said on Sunday, February 3, that the United States army's intervention in Venezuela was "an option".

Mr. Putin has called Mr. Maduro to relay his support for the regime, and Russian officials reacted angrily to President Trump's suggestion Sunday that US military action was an option to resolve the crisis.

France, Germany, Britain, Portugal, Austria, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, the Czech Republic and Luxembourg also recognized Guaido.

Italy is not alone in opposing recognising Guaido.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Monday pledged Can$53 million (US$40 million) in humanitarian aid for Venezuelans amid a deepening crisis.

Maduro showed no signs of caving in and lashed out at the European Union, accusing it of taking orders from the Trump administration, who he has repeatedly accused of trying to carry out a coup to get its hands on Venezuela's oil reserves, the world's largest.

The UK's decision to recognise Guaido, 35, as interim leader follows similar declarations by other European Union leaders, including Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron. Jon Snow is joined by the Labour MP Chris Williamson, who like Jeremy Corbyn, has supported the Chavez and Maduro governments in Venezuela. But there were no signs the armed forces were turning against Maduro.

In an interview that aired Monday with Italy's Sky TG24 he said that he had written Pope Francis asking for help in fostering dialogue with the opposition.

But its statement was more measured than that of CUPE, focusing on calling for the government to "promote dialogue to foster a peaceful solution to the Venezuelan crisis".

He said he finds the global endorsement of Guaido "problematic" but his main concern is the prospect of military intervention - something the US, which is not a member of the Lima Group, has mused about.

Yesterday, Guaido urged Western leaders to continue pressure on Maduro. It aims to address the crisis in Venezuela and is due to hold its first meeting in Uruguay on Thursday.

Freeland said Canada and its allies want to bring democracy to Venezuela, "the kind of democracy protesters in Canada do enjoy, and I am sad to say political protesters in Venezuela do not".

The group has not yet determined which border point it will cross, said the person, who asked not to be identified because he is not authorized to speak publicly about the issue.

The young lawmaker accused the military of planning to divert aid being stockpiled in Colombia, Brazil and an unidentified Caribbean island, in order to distribute it through the socialist government's subsidized food program for supporters.

Military: Maduro through his allies controls most of Venezuela's main state institutions - most importantly the military. "Canada should not simply follow the U.S.'s foreign policy, particularly given its history of self-interested interference in the region", said a statement by NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh issued January 24.

Venezuelans are "very close to reclaiming their freedom", he said.

The International Committee of the Red Cross is among the groups who have warned about the dangers of deploying aid without the consent of the Maduro government, which has repeatedly rejected the offers.

Canada has announced a humanitarian relief package for Venezuela.

Under anti-U.S. populist leader Hugo Chavez, Mr. Maduro's late predecessor and political mentor, Russian Federation became one of Venezuela's strongest allies with economic ties including crude oil, loans and arms sales.

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