Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s “days are numbered,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo predicted in the midst of a dramatic effort to deliver humanitarian aid to the country.
Pompeo projected confidence after Maduro’s regime obstructed efforts to deliver food supplies to the country in coordination with opposition leader Juan Guaido — the top lawmaker whom the United States and dozens of other countries have recognized as the interim president of Venezuela. Opposition to Guaidó claims that food deliveries are part of a campaign from the United States to expand political support against Maduro´s regime.
The situation is critical and has driven millions of Venezuelans to seek refuge in neighboring countries, others to fight against the brutal regime.
So far, four people have been killed and almost 300 have been injured in clashes with Maduro’s inconditionals this weekend, while he touted his success “I am stronger than ever,” he said in a speech from the capital of Caracas.
Trump’s team is working with Guaido to induce the military leadership around Maduro to abandon him, with the defection of Hugo Carvajal, a former intelligence chief who now sits as a legislator within Maduro’s party, as their highest-profile success to date. “He was the head of their intelligence and counter-intelligence apparatus for both Chavez and Maduro, so this is kind of as high as it gets in [terms of] having seen and done it all,” a senior administration official told reporters Friday while discussing Carvajal. “And so I think it’s a message for the rest of the Venezuelan military that they have an opportunity.”
Vice President Pence will meet with regional leaders in Colombia this Monday, and could unveil new sanctions on Maduro in light of the clashes over the weekend.
The Yucatan Times