Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro slams US Vice President Mike Pence for urging UN Security Council to recognize Juan Guaido as new president

A file photo of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro released by the Miraflores Palace press office Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro h...

A file photo of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro released by the Miraflores Palace press office

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has denounced as “arrogant” US Vice President Mike Pence for calling on the UN Security Council to recognize opposition leader Juan Guaido as the new president of the Latin American state.

In a televised speech on Wednesday, Maduro said Pence made “a fool of himself at the UN Security Council” by making such a move.

"I cannot understand his arrogance and self-importance, his racial supremacism," Maduro said.

During an emergency Security Council meeting on Wednesday, Pence said Washington was preparing a resolution to legitimize Guaido.

"The time has come for the United Nations to recognize interim president Juan Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela and seat his representative in this body," Pence told the council, adding that he had drafted a resolution on Venezuela.

Pence also announced that the US government will provide other $60mn in humanitarian aid to Venezuela.

The remarks drew reaction from Russia's UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia, who accused Washington of provoking an artificial crisis in Venezuela to overthrow its legitimately elected leader and replace him with a US pawn.

The US vice president’s comments came as the administration of President Donald Trump and Congress are working to increase pressure on the government of Maduro by introducing new sanctions and enticing Venezuelan officials to defect to the opposition figure.
Larry Kudlow, the top White House economic adviser, claimed at a press conference last week that the US would pump dollars into the Venezuelan economy once it “gets rid of” Maduro.

Kudlow said Washington was already working with banks and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on a plan to improve Venezuela’s economy.

“We call it Day Two. It would be a rescue plan, it would be a restructuring plan, it would be a plan to put cash into the country,” he said at the briefing, which was arranged by The Christian Science Monitor.

Venezuela has been in political chaos since Guaido declared himself “interim president” in late January. He has received backing and encouragement from the US government along the way.

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