Venezuela’s Guaido issues call for military uprising amid violent clashes

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, who many nations have recognised as the country's rightful interim ruler, talks to supporters in Caracas, Venezuela April 30, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido on Tuesday made his strongest call yet to the military to help him oust President Nicolas Maduro, and violence broke out at anti-government protests as the country hit a new crisis point after years of political and economic chaos.

Several dozen armed troops accompanying Guaido clashed with soldiers supporting Maduro at a rally outside the La Carlota air base in Caracas early on Tuesday, but the incident fizzled out and did not appear to be part of an immediate attempt by the opposition to take power through military force.

Guaido, in Twitter posts, wrote that he had begun the “final phase” of his campaign to topple Maduro, calling on Venezuelans and the armed forces to back him ahead of May Day mass street protests planned for Wednesday.

“The moment is now!” he wrote. “The future is ours: the people and Armed Forces united.”

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