"Salvadoran authorities are breathing oxygen into the failing U.S. strategy of intervention and economic blockade against the people of Venezuela," Venezuela's ministry said.
Venezuela's foreign ministry said on Sunday it was expelling El Salvador's diplomats from the country, in response to the Central American country's decision to expel diplomats representing Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.
In a statement, the ministry said it would give the diplomats 48 hours to leave. El Salvador President Nayib Bukele's government does not recognize Maduro as legitimate and said on Saturday it would receive a new diplomatic corps representing opposition leader Juan Guaido.
Guaido, who presides over the opposition-controlled National Assembly, in January, declared himself an "interim president" of Venezuela, in violation of Venezuela's constitution and in what was described as a "coup" by the Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. He has been recognized by dozens of Western countries, including the United States.
The Salvadoran move came less than a week after the U.S. government extended temporary protections for Salvadorans living in the United States by an extra year.
"Salvadoran authorities are breathing oxygen into the failing U.S. strategy of intervention and economic blockade against the people of Venezuela," Venezuela's ministry said. "Bukele is officially assuming the sad role of a pawn of U.S. foreign policy."
#COMMUNIQUÉ | In accordance with the principle of reciprocity, Venezuela expels diplomatic personnel from El Salvador in Caracas. Bukele officially assumes the sad role of pawn of U.S. foreign policy by giving oxygen to its strategy of aggression against the Venezuelan people pic.twitter.com/Oa3ywfxGcg— Cancillería Venezuela ���� (@CancilleriaVE) November 3, 2019
Bukele honors "the humiliating treatment that the United States government has given to his fellow citizens on immigration policy," the statement by the Venezuelan foreign ministry said.
"Those rulers who take advantage of the popular will to subordinate themselves to the designs of the empire on duty, end sooner rather than later, condemned to ostracism and the general rejection of their peoples."
Arreaza went on t say nevertheless Venezuela "will always be at the service of El Salvador to consolidate peace, sovereignty, independence and integration."
The Venezuelan government has repeatedly condemned Guaido who it sees as a U.S. puppet seeking to oust him in a coup and while blaming the U.S. economic sanctions for the country's economic problems, which have affected all aspects of life from oil sales to medicine and food imports.