Maduro says he will not allow United States humanitarian aid in Venezuela

Maduro says he will not allow United States humanitarian aid in Venezuela

Tensions rose when opposition leader Guaido declared himself acting president on January 23, a move which was supported by the USA and many European and Latin American countries.

"[Mr Guaido] will announce the day when, from Colombia, from the islands by sea, and from Brazil the humanitarian aid will arrive simultaneously", Mr Toledo said.

Maduro has rejected humanitarian aid as a USA ploy to intervene in Venezuela, calling the deployment of aid a "political show" and blaming U.S. sanctions for the country's widespread shortages of food and medicine.

Maduro has overseen an economic collapse in the oil-rich OPEC country that has left many Venezuelans malnourished and struggling to find medicine, sparking the exodus of an estimated 3 million Venezuelans.

"Nicolas Maduro should put his hand on his heart and accept that aid", said Mayerly Prada, among a small group of protesters on the Colombian side of the Tienditas International Bridge.

He said it was only a way of justifying a military intervention by US President Donald Trump's administration, which he slammed as a "gang of extremists".

Washington has said it will turn over control of those resources to Guaido once Maduro has been removed from power.

Guaido, who is recognized as Venezuela's true leader by around 50 countries, has asked the British government to ensure the Bank of England doesn't release the gold or other assets held there to Maduro. Mr Guaido has said the armed forced will allow the much-needed aid to enter the country.

The militia is a civilian force founded in 2008 to supplement the armed forces. Guaido has formerly said he may "authorize" United States military intervention in the country.

Juan Guaidó is touring Venezuela this week, meeting with journalists and citizens.

The announcement earned immediate praise from US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, who hailed the Jewish state for "standing with the people of Venezuela and the forces of freedom and democracy".

"They are warmongering in order to take over Venezuela", he told BBC. "We want and are working for this to be as peaceful, least traumatizing and as quick as possible".

"What do we lack today after 20 years of work, sacrifice, to build a majority?"

Venezuela's financial accountability authority announced a probe into Guaido's income on Monday, saying he had "allegedly. received money from worldwide and national bodies without any justification".

More than 40 percent of Venezuela's oil, which makes up 96 percent of its revenue, is sold to the United States, and Washington is using sanctions as an attempt to starve Maduro's regime of its funding.

"There are many Venezuelans in Israel and many Jews in Venezuela", Guaido said.

Guaido, who galvanized the opposition after several years of in-fighting, has vowed it will keep protesting to pressure Maduro to step down so new presidential elections can be held.

Mr Guaido called the move "almost genocidal".

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