Coup plotters not to go unpunished — Venezuela's Maduro

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On Tuesday, Guaido, whom many countries recognize as the president of the South American nation, publicly called for the military to back him to force Maduro from power, sparking protests and violence. Maduro's forces began fighting back against pro-Guaido supporters.

The United States and Russian Federation were at odds over Venezuela, with Washington telling Moscow to keep out of "our hemisphere", and the Kremlin warning the Trump administration against any "aggressive" moves against its ally Maduro.

Thousands of protestors have responded to the call to rise up.

"Nerves of steel!" he said in a message posted on Twitter.

"The president has been briefed and we are monitoring the ongoing situation", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in an email.

The repayments on these weapons will nearly certainly be lost if Guaido takes power, while any future weapons orders will likely be taken over by America. "If that's what's required, that's what the United States will do", Pompeo said on Fox Business Network, as reported by AFP.

He promised the biggest protests in the country's history, while rubbishing Maduro's claim to have control of the military as "a farce". Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan has canceled his worldwide travel set for Wednesday in order to more effectively coordinate with the National Security Council and the State Department on Venezuela, Shanahan's spokesperson said.

The Pentagon downplayed any active planning to directly intervene in Venezuela, telling Congress it had not been given orders to prepare for war and stressing support for diplomacy.

His calls for a military uprising drew quick support from the Trump administration and fierce resistance from forces loyal to socialist leader Mr Maduro.

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The U.S. has been urging Russian Federation not to get involved in the Venezuelan conflict, following a longstanding U.S. policy of trying to prevent European influence in Latin America dating back to the President James Monroe, and the Monroe Doctrine. A spokeswoman for Russia's foreign ministry denied that.

US national security adviser John Bolton told CNN and Fox News that Pompeo would talk Wednesday with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov about Moscow's continued support for the embattled Maduro. Lopez told a Reuters reporter there that intelligence agents had allowed him to leave his house. "It's not where the Russians ought to be interfering". Shortages of food and medicine have prompted more than 3 million Venezuelans to emigrate in recent years.

Armed vehicles plowed into protesters Tuesday after security tried to disperse them with tear gas, as demonstrators threw projectiles and Molotov cocktails.

"Yeah... No? It's kind of hard to see what you're talking about". Gaido enjoys the backing of the U.S. government.

Soldiers backing Guaido wore blue armbands to demonstrate their allegiance to the opposition leader - recognized as interim president by more than 50 countries - but there appeared to be few of them.

Maduro, a former bus driver who took office after the death of political mentor President Hugo Chavez in 2013, said he had spoken with military leaders and that they had shown him "their total loyalty".

Brazil said later a number of Venezuelan troops had sought asylum at its Caracas embassy.

Venezuela has been rocked by protests since January 10, when Maduro was sworn in for a second term following a vote boycotted by the opposition.

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