Putin expresses support to Maduro in phone call

COMPILED FROM WIRE SERVICES
ISTANBUL
Published 24.01.2019 19:59
Updated 25.01.2019 00:27
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro (L) and Russia's President Vladimir Putin shake hands during their meeting in Beijing, China, in this handout picture provided by Miraflores Palace on September 3, 2015. (Reuters Photo)
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro (L) and Russia's President Vladimir Putin shake hands during their meeting in Beijing, China, in this handout picture provided by Miraflores Palace on September 3, 2015. (Reuters Photo)

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday called his Venezuelan counterpart Nicolas Maduro and expressed support, after several other nations recognized the self-declared Venezuelan leader Juan Guaido, the Kremlin said.

"The President of Russia expressed support for the legitimate authorities of Venezuela in the context of a domestic political crisis that has been provoked from the outside," it said.

In the call, Putin also said he supports a "peaceful dialogue" in Venezuela. The President also added that intervention in Venezuela's domestic affairs is a gross violation of international law.

Russia previously dismissed the political crisis in Venezuela as an attempted coup and expressed concern over suggestions of possible foreign military intervention, calling President Maduro the crisis-hit country's legitimate leader.

Meanwhile, legendary Argentinian football player Diego Maradona also backed Maduro.

"I'm not going to change. Today, more than ever, I am with President Nicolas Maduro. The people rule in Venezuela," Maradona wrote in an Instagram post.

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido stunned Venezuelans on Wednesday by declaring himself interim president before cheering supporters in Venezuela's capital, buoyed by massive anti-government protests. And support from the U.S., Canada and numerous Latin American countries, along with the Organization of American States, immediately rolled in, while Turkey, Russia, China, Iran, Mexico, Bolivia and Cuba expressed their support for Maduro.

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