The Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza responded to a statement by the European Union which issued an ultimatum to the Venezuelan government to hold elections within eight days. He asked them to drop the measure that would recognize Juan Guaido, opposition leader for the Venezuelan National Assembly, in contempt since 2016, who unconstitutionally declared himself "interim" president, as Venezuela’s leader.
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Arreaza repudiated the European Union and said its declaration put them in the same camp as the United State-backed coup that has been in progress, most forcefully since Jan. 23, but which has been ongoing for years, since the Hugo Chavez administration:
“The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela expresses its most forceful rejection of the declaration by the European Union of Jan. 26, through which it has demonstrated it’s signing on to the coup d'etat orchestrated by the United States government, and which has the intent of giving an ultimatum to the Venezuelan state, which is befitting of the old colonial powers it represents.”
He also accused them of helping create a dangerous situation in Venezuela by joining the United States and its allies in propping up an opposition that it would install as a puppet government, saying: “Venezuela laments that the European Union didn’t have the courage to withstand pressure from the United States, and has consequently decided to join it’s chorus of dependent satellites. We call for them to drop their recalcitrance and adopt instead a balanced and respectful position that doesn’t contribute to the damage of the constitutional order and violence.
Juan Guaido, proclaimed himself "interim"president of Venezuela on Jan. 23. with the backing of United States authorities, some of which have been working for years to destabilize Venezuela and its economy in a bid for access to its bountiful natural resources like oil, gas, and gold. He has been recognized by 17 countries as the "intertim" president which does not comport with the Venezuelan constitution.
Arreaza addressed these countries' recognition of the unconstitutional proclamation by reminding, "European authorities that the legitimacy and constitutionality of our electoral processes, of the institution and authority of the Venezuelan state, do not depend on recognition, judges, or positions of any foreign body, meaning that your arrogant demands have no tangible effect.”
The Venezuelan foreign minister finished by saying that he is counting on continuing to build relationships with the countries of Europe that are built on respect.