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Losing support in Venezuela, Guaido marks 1 year as ‘interim president’ abroad in search of US & European backing

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21.01.2020

Around this time a year ago, hardly anyone outside of Venezuela had ever heard the name Juan Guaido. Truth be told, he was barely known inside the country.

But on January 23, 2019, the young opposition legislator burst onto the global scene after he declared himself the ‘interim’ president of Venezuela in a ‘swearing in’ ceremony before thousands of supporters in one of Caracas’ more affluent neighborhoods. Guaido claimed Nicolas Maduro had illegitimately usurped the country’s top post, and enjoyed the backing of the opposition-controlled National Assembly as well as the support of Maduro’s external adversaries.

Venezuela’s opposition seemed buoyed and emboldened, and Guaido promised that Maduro’s days were numbered.

A full year later, and Guaido is marking the first year of his ‘term’ outside of his country, but nonetheless surrounded by some of his staunchest supporters – the Colombian and the US governments.

On Sunday, Guaido was greeted warmly by Colombian president Ivan Duque as he – defying a court-imposed travel ban – arrived for a regional anti-terrorism summit in Bogota, the first leg of a tour where he is looking to reassure representatives of allied governments that he is still the Venezuelan ‘president’.

While US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo publically maintained that he is “the duly elected leader of Venezuela” (though he was only elected as a member of the legislature in 2015, finishing second in his district), there can be........

© RT.com