Venezuela calls on US to protect embassy amid standoff between activists – Caracas

Venezuela calls on US to protect embassy amid standoff between activists – Caracas

Agency News

Mexico City, May 3 : The Venezuelan government is calling on the United States to protect its embassy in Washington, DC, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza has said in the wake of a standoff between the pro-government and opposition activists there.

Last week, Venezuelan diplomats of the government of President Nicolas Maduro left the diplomatic mission at the order of Washington. However, US activists, supporting Maduro, have been occupying the embassy with the consent of the authorities to prevent the supporters of Venezuelan opposition leader and self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guaido from taking over the embassy. The US State Department has accused the pro-Maduro activists from illegally occupying the site. Moreover, the supporters of Guaido rallied in front of the embassy earlier this week.

"We are calling on the US State Department to implement its obligations as a signatory of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and for the protection of the Venezuelan embassy in Washington the same way as our government protects your structures in Caracas," Arreaza wrote on Twitter on Thursday.
The US State Department has said it would take all appropriate action to protect Venezuela's embassy if the US supporters of Maduro refuse to leave the building. Meanwhile, US diplomats have left their embassy in Caracas at the request of the Venezuelan authorities.

Venezuela has been rocked by unrest since January when Guaido proclaimed himself an interim president and was supported by the United States. Maduro, backed by China and Russia, has accused the United States of seeking to overthrow him and install Maduro in a bid to get hold of Venezuela’s oil assets.

On Tuesday, the opposition carried out a failed attempt to overthrow Maduro. The coup attempt turned violent and resulted in at least 300 people injured, according to a local human rights group. (SPUTNIK)