Russian airplane in Venezuela sparks rumors of gold theft by Maduro ally

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He described Maduro as a dictator and referred to Guaido as his president, but refused to say whether he is still in Venezuela or has left the country.

The United States is "disappointed" with Turkey's support of embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, a senior U.S. official said Thursday, after Washington backed a bid by the South American's country's opposition to remove the leader from office.

The opposition's priority is to end Mr Maduro's grip on power and usher in a transition by holding democratic elections, Mr Guaido said in the letter to Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez and Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

In an op-ed in the Times Mr Guadio wrote: "The military's withdrawal of support from Mr Maduro is crucial to enabling a change in government, and the majority of those in service agree that the country's recent travails are untenable", Guaido wrote.

Guaido said there would be something for everyone in society to do as Venezuela moves forward, including the military.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the official urged Venezuelan military officials to accept Guaido's offer of amnesty if they backed his claim.

The European Parliament has passed a resolution, calling EU member states to recognise self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guaido as head of the country.

On Monday, the 27th of January, 2019, the U.S. administration had imposed a sweeping sanction on PDVSA, the Venezuelan state-owned oil firm, which used to export around 5,20,000 barrels of heavy crude per day to USA refineries.

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"We have to erode the pillars that support this dictatorship", he said.

On Thursday, Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido said security forces showed up at his family's Caracas apartment In an effort to intimidate him.

The dramatic turn against Maduro's leftist regime culminated quickly, but it came after weeks of behind-the-scenes diplomacy including a hushed meeting in Washington with Guaido, who was quickly recognized by Washington as Venezuela's president.

President Donald Trump's national security adviser John Bolton tweeted Thursday that Maduro and his top advisers should retire to "a nice beach somewhere far away from Venezuela".

An "international contact group" announced Thursday by the EU's top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, "should help to cease the usurpation of power by Maduro and establish a transitional government until new elections", said Francisco Sucre, who heads the global committee of the opposition-led National Assembly.

On January 21, a group of 27 soldiers rose up against Maduro in Caracas.

In interviews and press conferences, Guaido stresses again and again his team's push to safeguard Venezuela's few remaining assets so that they can be used to fund the flow of humanitarian aid into the crisis-torn country. Last week, street protests turned violent in days of unrest that killed almost three dozen people in clashes with government security forces.

"But that is not the view of the Turkish government and we are disappointed by that", the official said.