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Monday June 24th, 2019 7:39PM

The Latest: Guaidó asks for relations with US military

By The Associated Press
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CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The latest on the political crisis in Venezuela (all times local):

2:25 p.m.

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó says he's instructed his political envoy in Washington to immediately open relations with the U.S. military.

Guaidó said Saturday that he's asked his ambassador Carlos Vecchio to open "direct communications" toward possible coordination.

U.S.-backed Guaidó is leading a campaign to oust President Nicolás Maduro.

In recent days Venezuelan security forces arrested National Assembly Vice President Edgar Zambrano, the body's No. 2 leader. Other lawmakers also scrambled for refuge in foreign embassies amid renewed fears of a crackdown following an unsuccessful military rebellion.

Guaidó says he's keeping "all options on the table" to remove Maduro, repeating language used by U.S. President Donald Trump and his chief advisers.

Earlier this week, U.S. Navy Adm. Craig Faller said he would meet with Guaidó when invited to discuss the future role of Venezuela's armed forces.

___

2:15 p.m.

A modest crowd of Venezuelans took to the streets Saturday to show support for the opposition-led congress which is coming under increasing pressure from the government of President Nicolás Maduro.

Opposition leader Juan Guaidó addressed several hundred people who had gathered in the capital in support of his bid to oust the socialist president.

But the noticeably diminished crowds reflected a growing fear and demoralization that has permeated Guaidó's ranks of supporters after he led a failed military uprising on April 30. In previous months, thousands of demonstrators heeded his calls to protest.

"We live in dictatorship," Guaidó said. "We don't have the option to stay at home waiting, but to keep demanding our rights in the streets."

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP World News
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