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Venezuela – New Venezuela congress leader vows to fight Maduro / Venezuela's Maduro sworn in for a 2

(14 Feb 2019) On January 5th 2019 Venezuela’s opposition-controlled congress opened its first session of the year, installing a fresh-faced leader who struck a defiant tone and vowed to take up the battle against socialist President Nicolas Maduro.
Juan Guaido, 35, assumed the presidency of a National Assembly stripped of power by Maduro, whose government is blamed for leading the once-wealthy oil nation into a historic political and humanitarian crisis.
Speaking to legislators, Guaido said the National Assembly should assume representation of the Venezuelan people, since it is the only legitimate elected body.
Tall and youthful, Guaido represents the next generation of Venezuelan political opposition, taking up the assembly’s leadership following 74-year-old Omar Barboza.
Guaido is an industrial engineer and former student leader from the same political party as Leopoldo Lopez, Venezuela’s most popular opposition leader under house arrest.
Government opponents consider him a political prisoner.
Guaido called Maduro a dictator whose legitimacy has run out.
He said congress should create a transitional government charged with holding free and fair elections.
He addressed a hall filled only with opposition lawmakers as the government loyalists have long boycotted any sessions, saying the National Assembly has itself overstepped its authority.
However, roughly 20 foreign diplomats from the United States, Canada, Japan, Italy and Germany attended the assembly’s inaugural session in a show of solidarity.
It opened days before Maduro’s inauguration to a second, six-year term widely condemned as illegitimate after he declared victory in the May 20 election that many foreign powers considered a sham.

On january 10th Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro was sworn in to a second term despite international calls for him to step down amid a devastating economic crisis.
Maduro, accompanied by his wife Celia Flores, arrived at the Venezuelan Supreme Court for the inauguration and was greeted by applause by his supporters.
After reciting the national anthem, Maduro took the oath of office and signed the documents of his appointment as President.
Seventeen Latin American governments, plus the United States and Canada, rejected the legitimacy of Maduro’s election victory.
Most countries from Europe and Latin America didn’t send representatives to the inauguration ceremony.
In a speech, Maduro vowed to continue the legacy of the late President Hugo Chavez and accused the United States of trying to ignite unrest through its increasing economic sanctions.
He said he was ready to guide his country towards a better future.
Maduro’s second term extends Venezuela’s socialist revolution amid widespread complaints that he has stripped Venezuela of its last vestiges of democracy.
Maduro denies that he’s a dictator and often blames President Donald Trump for leading an economic war against Venezuela that’s destroying the country.

Violent street protests erupted in Venezuela’s capital on January 21st after an apparent uprising by a national guard unit.
Security forces fired tear gas at protesters in a poor neighbourhood of the Venezuelan capital, just twoi miles (three kilometres) from the presidential palace.
The disturbance early on January 21st started hours after a group of men dressed in military fatigues and carrying assault weapons published a series of videos on social media saying they won’t recognize President Nicolas Maduro’s government.

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