Venezuela's Guaido sets aid entry date amid anti-Maduro protests

Venezuela's Guaido sets aid entry date amid anti-Maduro protests

Venezuela's Guaido sets aid entry date amid anti-Maduro protests

Venezuela's opposition supporters took to the streets today to demand humanitarian aid is allowed inside the country.

The centre, to be set up in Roraima state, would be the second on the Venezuelan border after one in Cucuta, Colombia, said Lester Toledo, the head of Guaido's aid distribution team.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has renewed his offer to help mediate "serious negotiations" between the elected government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and opposition figure Juan Guaido, who has declared himself "interim president" of Venezuela.

Last week, two U.S. trucks carrying food and medical supplies arrived at Venezuela's border, according to a U.S. official in the Colombian border town of Cucuta.

Venezuelans have faced shortages of basic necessities such as food and medicines as the economy went into meltdown under Maduro's leadership.

"Maduro is unaware of the crisis (.) the deterioration of the quality of life, of public services, the risk of life we have in Venezuela", he said. To do so, he will nearly certainly need the support of Venezuela's military. Guaido, meanwhile, said on Monday that the first shipment of the humanitarian aid had already been received.

"Put yourselves on the side of the constitution, but also on the side of humanity", Venezuela's self-proclaimed President Juan Guaido tells the country's military. "We lack the factor that ultimately sustains dictatorships, which is the Armed Forces", he added.

"We have begun working toward renewing the ties, and I'm very happy to announce that the process of stabilizing the relations with Israel is at its height", Guaido said.

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German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who was visiting Colombia, said in the city of Cartagena that Venezuela was on the verge of bankruptcy and that the supply situation of the population was "dramatically bad". "Who are we? Venezuelan doctors!"

Belandria met with Foreign Minister Ernesto Araujo to discuss, among other matters, ways to "send food and medicine to alleviate the suffering of the Venezuelan people subjected to Maduro's illegitimate regime", the ministry said in a statement.

For his supporters, Guaido appeared to be something of a rockstar, as they desperately tried to take selfies and cheered emphatically every time he spoke or his name was mentioned.

More than 40 percent of Venezuela's oil, which makes up 96 percent of its revenue, is sold to the US.

He said he will reject the "minuscule crumbs that they intend to bring with toxic food, with leftovers that they have".

Guaido has vowed that the opposition, which he has re-galvanized, will keep protesting in order to keep up pressure on Maduro to step down so new presidential elections can be held.

Accusing those blocking aid of being "almost genocidal", he likewise warned that the military would be held responsible for the deaths of protesters - and reaffirmed his call for a mass march on Tuesday in memory of the estimated 40 people killed in disturbances since January 21.

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