Miami reporter based in Venezuela detained

German ambassador to Venezuela Daniel Martin Kriener delivers a news conference next to Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido and accredited diplomatic representatives of the European Union in Caracas

The U.S.is pursuing new diplomatic and economic initiatives to support Guaido's bid for a transitional government in Venezuela, National Security Adviser John Bolton said Wednesday.

Sherry Weddle says she hasn't spoken to her son yet but has messaged him via Facebook.

Lawyers and press freedom groups say Venezuelan security forces have seized a USA journalist at his apartment amid the country's escalating political turmoil.

It wasn't clear why he was detained.

Politicians and relatives are urging Venezuelan officials to release a freelance journalist and Southwest Virginia native who was detained there after a raid on his home.

Many parts of Venezuela remained engulfed by darkness early Friday amid one of the largest power outages in years. "He had a sandwich before he left", Araque said.

In the latest crackdown on a challenge to his rule by opposition leader Juan Guaido, Maduro also expelled the German ambassador, accusing him of repeated meddling in the country's affairs.

BERLIN - Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido said in an interview that the expulsion of the German ambassador by Caracas was a threat against Germany, Der Spiegel magazine reported on Thursday. He arrived in the country as an English-language correspondent for state-run network Telesur. Agents took Weddle's computer and equipment, the group said.

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The 29-year-old Weddle was detained along with his Venezuelan assistant Carlos Camacho, who was also held for some 12 hours before being released.

Both men were interrogated, Ruiz said. However, the official did not offer any further details over the issue.

"Completely unacceptable for @NicolasMaduro and his thugs to detain @WPLGLocal10's Cody Weddle for reporting on the successful return of the legitimate Venezuelan President @jguaido." said Scott in a Twitter post.

A US journalist who was detained in Venezuela on Wednesday was released and deported hours later.

The special envoy for Venezuela Elliott Abrams and director of the U.S. Agency for International Development Mark Green told Congress that the administration is promoting a peaceful political transition in Venezuela.

At about 7 a.m. Wednesday, a group of armed men, a lot of them dressed in black, approached Weddle's Caracas apartment building, said Florangel Manzo, 49, the president of the condominium board. This time there was no reply, she said.

Breier said the State Department was "aware of and deeply concerned" by the reports of Weddle's detainment.

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