Fiery molotov cocktails, smoke from tear gas canisters, and the clap of automatic weapons fill the streets of Caracas where an attempt to overthrow President Nicholas Maduro and rescue a starving country is underway.
Opposition leader Juan Guaido spoke through a loudspeaker to cheering supporters, “Operation Freedom has begun!”
two presidents, one country
The Venezuela constitution states that an invalid election results in the head of the National Assembly taking over as acting president. When Maduro’s election was considered to be a sham, Juan Guaido assumed the title of president.
With this, the US and 50 other countries supported Guaido as the rightful leader. Yet, Nicholas Maduro has refused to step down.
under Maduro, the country is nearly failed
Maduro is largely to blame for the country’s economic collapse, which has resulted in a humanitarian crisis, including food and medical shortages. He has faced continual protests, despite imprisoning and beating the dissenters.
The world has tried to help Venezuelans by sending food and medical aid, but Maduro has not allowed truck convoys to enter the country.
this attempt to overthrow Maduro might actually work
This morning, Guaido appeared with members of the military as a demonstration of support from a group that has remained largely loyal to Maduro.
Guaido also had Leopoldo Lopez at his side. Lopez is popular and prominent opposition leader who was under house arrest until someone–maybe the military–assisted in his release.
A small contingent of Russian military is currently in Venezuela. Russia has voiced its support of Maduro.