Venezuela’s opposition leader Juan Guaido has formally requested the support of US military forces in the ongoing political and humanitarian crisis inside the South American country, a letter published by his representative Carlos Vecchio said on Monday.
“We welcome strategic and operational planning so that we may fulfil our constitutional obligation to the Venezuelan people in order to alleviate their suffering and restore our democracy,” Vecchio said in the letter to the commander of United States Southern Command Admiral Craig Faller.
In the letter, which is dated May 11 and was published by Vecchio on Twitter on Monday, he requests a meeting between SOUTHCOM and “the appropriate members” of Guaido’s inner circle.
“We are grateful to the United States for its friendship, resolve and readiness to support our continued efforts to place Venezuelan people first and look forward to fruitful planning and coordination,” Vecchio said.
Venezuela has experienced a worsening political crisis since January, when Guaido proclaimed himself to be interim president. Guaido has also declared Vecchio to be his ambassador to the United States.
The United States and 54 countries recognised Guaido, but Russia, China, Turkey and numerous other countries have said they recognise President Nicolas Maduro as the only legitimate head of state in Venezuela.
Maduro has called Guaido a US puppet and accused the United States of orchestrating a coup in Venezuela to effect a forced change of government and claim the country’s resources.