Donald Trump reiterated that the use of the US military in Venezuela was “an option” being considered.
When asked, in an interview with the American channel CBS broadcast on Sunday, what would lead him to resort to the army, the President of the United States first explained that he did not want to comment on it.
“But it’s certainly an option,” he acknowledged.
Washington had already made it clear, in recent months and again in recent days, that “all options”, including military, were on the table.
Donald Trump recognized Juan Guaido as the interim president of Venezuela on January 23. The latter had just proclaimed himself president in the face of socialist leader Nicolas Maduro, whose re-election as head of the country the United States does not recognize.
Washington has already taken strict economic sanctions to try to push President Maduro out of the country, including calling on the army to join Camp Guaido.
European pressure on Maduro
Paris described Sunday’s proposal by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to hold early legislative elections on the last day of the ultimatum of six EU countries, including France, to call a presidential election as a “farce”.
Six European countries (Germany, Spain, France, Netherlands, Portugal, United Kingdom) have given Nicolas Maduro eight days to call a new presidential election, failing which they would recognize his opponent Juan Guaido as president.
“The ultimatum ends tonight. If, by this evening, Mr Maduro does not commit to holding presidential elections, we will consider Mr Guaido legitimate to hold them in his place and we will consider him as the interim President until legitimate elections,” said French Minister for European Affairs Nathalie Loiseau.
The United States, Canada and a number of Latin American countries, including Colombia and Brazil, have already recognized Juan Guaido.
Supported by Russia, China, North Korea, Turkey and Cuba, Mr. Maduro, 56, rejected the European ultimatum and accused the United States of orchestrating a coup d’état.
1st meeting of the EU Contact Group 7 February in Montevideo
An international contact group set up by the EU to promote the organisation of a presidential election is due to meet in Montevideo on 7 February, European diplomacy chief Federica Mogherini and Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez announced on Sunday.
The EU and eight of its Member States (France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom) are members, as are Bolivia, Costa Rica, Ecuador and Uruguay for Latin American countries.