Venezuela turns to Russian Federation for help as crisis deepens

Venezuela's self-proclaimed president Juan Guaido speaks during a meeting with university students at the Central University of Venezuela in Caracas Venezuela. Venezuelans abroad are already playing a key role

The United States and Russian Federation both failed on Thursday in rival bids to get the United Nations Security Council to take action on Venezuela, cementing a global split over how to deal with a political and humanitarian crisis in the South American country.

The United States immediately recognized Guaido, and around 50 other countries followed suit.

The U.S. draft resolution garnered the minimum nine votes, forcing Russian Federation and China to cast vetoes.

"The Council very unlikely will be able to agree today", Pierce said on Thursday.

Battered by an economic meltdown, Venezuela descended into a major political crisis when opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself interim president in January and asserted that President Nicolas Maduro was no longer legitimate.

The crisis turned violent over the weekend when four people died in clashes at Venezuela's borders during an attempt led by Guaido to bring in humanitarian aid from Colombia and Brazil.

Nebenzia said the Trump administration's sole goal is "regime change, including with threats to do so via foreign intervention". Venezuela continues to keep its borders closed to keep humanitarian aid from entering. While in Vietnam, the president also addressed the ongoing situation in Venezuela. And while Guaido says all options for Maduro's removal are on the table - a comment interpreted as an openness to US military intervention - Colombia, Brazil and other countries that back the opposition appear more cautious, insisting on a peaceful solution to Venezuela's crisis.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters that getting aid into Venezuela to assist millions of people in need of basic necessities remains hard.

Guaido is in Brazil to meet with President Jair Bolsonaro, another supporter of his and a Maduro opponent.

President Trump didn't refer to Maduro by name while addressing the issu.

"We are hopeful that over the next couple of weeks, we can really begin to make a dent in that problem".

A defiant return by Guaido to steer protests against Maduro would test the resolve of a government that says the 35-year-old head of Venezuela's National Assembly left the country illegally.

Despite efforts to block the aid, President Trump said the still finding ways to get the aid into Venezuela.

But Guaido said he plans to go back, telling a television interviewer, "A prisoner is no use to anyone".

Meanwhile, Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez is holding talks Friday in Moscow with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, looking for continued support for the Maduro government.



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