Venezuelan opposition leader and self-declared acting president Juan Guaido delivers a speech during the Venezuela Oil Industry Forum in Caracas on February 15, 2019.  Juan BARRETO / AFP

 

US Vice President Mike Pence on Saturday called on the European Union to recognise opposition leader Juan Guaido as the president of Venezuela.

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“All of us must stand with the Venezuelan people until freedom and democracy is fully restored,” Pence told the Munich Security Conference.

“So today we call on the European Union to step forward for freedom and recognise Juan Guaido as the only legitimate president of Venezuela.”

Guaido, the head of Venezuela’s National Assembly, declared himself president of the crisis-wracked country in January, piling pressure on President Nicolas Maduro.

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Pence said that after the United States became the first nation to recognise the parliamentary leader as head of state, “52 nations including 30 of our European allies have followed America’s lead”.

“But it’s time for the rest of the world to step forward,” he said.

“Once more the Old World can take a stance in support of freedom in the New World. All of us must stand with the Venezuelan people until freedom and democracy is fully restored.”

AFP

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