EU nations put Venezuela's Maduro on notice

European Union Foreign Affairs and Security Policy chief Javier Solana right shakes hands with a member of the US National Security Council Elliot Abrams left prior to their meeting at the EU Council building in Brussels Belgium on Nov. 22 2006. Sec

The United States called for a U.N. Security Council meeting on Saturday, where Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged worldwide leaders to "pick a side" on the issue.

Washington immediately supported Juan Guaidó, the opposition leader who declared himself interim president last week.

Guaido said he is acting in accordance with two articles of the constitution that give the National Assembly president the right to hold power temporarily and to call for new elections.

The young head of the opposition-controlled congress declared himself Venezuela's interim president last week as part of a campaign to remove Maduro.

Speaking at the U.N. meeting, called by the United States, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Maduro's "socialist experiment" had caused the economy to collapse and reduced ordinary Venezuelans to rooting through dumpsters for food. "That is true diplomacy", Maduro said in a live broadcast with Venezuelan youth.

Guaido has won wide global support, including from the United States.

As the deadline expired, Maduro said he had begun negotiations to set up within 30 days an Interests Section in Caracas to maintain a minimum level of diplomatic contact, similar to the arrangement the United States had with Cuba until their 2015 rapprochement.

Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro on Sunday rejected an ultimatum from the United Kingdom and four other European countries giving him eight days to call new elections, describing the move as "complete insolence". United States diplomats in Venezuela have until Saturday to leave the country, but Washington has refused to fully comply fully with the exit order.

Francis said Sunday from nearby Panama that he was feeling particularly close to Venezuelans in these days of crisis.

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Washington, which was among the first to recognise Guaido as leader of the oil-rich country, urged the world on Saturday to "pick a side" on Venezuela and financially disconnect from Maduro's government.

Pope Francis is calling for a "just and peaceful solution" to Venezuela's political crisis that respects human rights and works for the good of all people.

Israel on Sunday joined a growing list of countries led by the United States that back Guaido's claim to the presidency on the basis that Maduro's second-term election victory was fraudulent.

Venezuela's Foreign Ministry says it has extended a deadline for USA diplomats to leave following it's rupture in relations.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) disputed on Sunday that the United States would participate in a coup to oust Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, saying he doesn't know of any USA leaders who are calling for one.

"Let the Venezuelan people determine their future".

Maduro gave US diplomats 72 hours to leave the country, but the Trump administration said it wouldn't comply, arguing that Maduro is no longer Venezuela's legitimate president.

Israel has recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as the country's interim president. Maduro has since backed down and has agreed to 30 days to finalize the diplomats' roles in Venezuela.

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