In Venezuela, the event seems reversed after opposition leader Juan Guaido made a video to the people in the early hours on Tuesday. Guaido was surrounded by soldiers as sign of their support, they dressed blue armband.
Apparently, the video was recorded in the military base La Carlota in the middle of Caracas. It is one of the most important military installations in the country. Army personnel have agreed to support the constitution and participate in the “Operation Freedom,” Guaido said in a video. As a sign of non-violence, the population should take to the streets.
The information from Venezuela is contradictory. It is unclear if the army has actually beaten Guiado’s side in large part, or if it is just a small group. The latter claimed the regime of Nicolas Maduro. Later on, information minister Jorge Rodriguez tweeted that a coup by a group of traitors was being crushed in the ranks of the army.
Army chief Vladimir Padrino Lopez initially spoke of normalcy in all military units. But at the same time there were rumors that Guaido’s movement would be supported by at least one general from the army’s command staff.
The military is said to have freed the opposition figurehead Leopoldo Lopez from house arrest. Lopez has been imprisoned since 2014 when he led the first major protests against Maduro. Now he is on the side of Guaido. This is the moment of all Venezuelans, said Lopez, the uniformed and the non-uniformed. Everyone should go to the streets peacefully.
Lopez is considered the leader behind the opposition’s plan and Guaido’s political foster father. The liberation of Lopez and the occupation of one of the most important military bases in the country makes it clear that the opposition is ready to go to extremes.
Diosdado Cabello, the leader of the ruling Socialist Party, played down the events of the early morning hours. However, he called on the followers to gather at the presidential palace to defend Maduro. These supporters also include the “Colectivos”, armed paramilitary city militias loyal to the regime.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza accused Colombia of giving financial support to the insurgents.
The reactions from abroad did not wait long on Tuesday. Luis Almagro, Secretary-General of the Organization of American States, has expressed his fullest support for the democratic transition process and demanded that it should be brought about peacefully.
Spanish government called for a democratic process without bloodshed and immediate elections. Colombia called for an emergency meeting of the Lima group to discuss the situation in Venezuela.