Turmoil in Venezuela

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Turmoil in Venezuela

Sal Donofrio, Staff Writer

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After years of dissent towards Nicolás Maduro’s hyperinflated economy, high unemployment, and near dictatorial rule, the people’s anger appears to have reached a boiling point.

On Wednesday, January 23rd, National Assembly leader Juan Guiadó declared himself interim president of Venezuela and inspiring more people to go out and protest the Maduro regime. President Trump immediately recognized Guiadó’s presidency, followed by Canada, Brazil, Peru, Argentina, Colombia, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Chile, Germany, France, the UK, Ukraine, Georgia and Kosovo with many more EU nations have threatened to join the US in opposing Maduro if he did not call for an election within 8 days.

However, Mexico, Bolivia, Cuba, Syria, South Africa, Turkey, Iran, Russia, and China have announced that they will continue to recognize Maduro’s regime. The amount of pressure from neighboring countries has increased the pressure on Maduro to resign from his position.

Since the United States has recognized the new government, Maduro has accused the United States of instigating a coup, severed all diplomatic ties with the United States and given 72 hours for American personnel to leave the country. Maduro also called upon his supporters and the people of Venezuela to defend his government.

Russian mercenaries have also been reported to be defending Maduro and the US has evacuated all non-essential diplomatic personnel from the country and those American diplomats that have stayed have reportedly been threatened. 

The people have before attempted to protest the Maduro regime, only to have the regime crackdown, and 2 years ago imposed martial law and disbanded congress. Other than an inflated economy and little representation, why are the people of Venezuela angry?

Due to Venezuela having a single export economy, years of rising taxes on foreign companies drilling for oil in Venezuela cut their losses and began drilling elsewhere, resulting in a huge blow to Venezuela’s economy. After years of starving under their current government, will the people of Venezuela have a new chance at freedom, peace and prosperity?