American Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo met with Venezuelan Juan Guaido in Bogota on Monday, January 20, on the sidelines of a regional conference on terrorism. The Venezuelan opposition leader has defied a ban on leaving the country to start an international tour. Recognized as the legitimate president of Venezuela by fifty countries, he is expected in Brussels, Wednesday, then Thursday in Davos, and Friday in Paris.
With our correspondent in Bogota, Marie-Eve Detoeuf
No one knows how Juan Guaido crossed the border. But, in Bogota, he was received as head of state, with a red carpet and a guard of honor. Guaido who almost a year ago proclaimed himself president of the Republic failed to oust Nicolas Maduro from power.
But he continues to count on the unwavering support of Washington: Mike Pompeo recalled it. The two men appeared side by side in front of the cameras. Mr. Guaido, a little intimidated by his powerful neighbor, recalled the tragedy his country is experiencing, before thanking the Americans for their support.
Pompeo, for his part, announced new sanctions against the government of Nicolas Maduro, without specifying the content. He called on the world in general, and the American allies in particular, to support the efforts of the Venezuelan people to end "the tyranny of Maduro". Mr. Pompeo did not see fit to respond to Mr. Maduro who on Friday said he was ready for direct dialogue with Washington.