Rebel troops stage mutiny in bid to kick out president

Armored cars in front of Cotiza Bolivarian National Guard headquarter in Caracas Venezuela after an uprisingMore

Armored cars in front of Cotiza Bolivarian National Guard headquarter in Caracas Venezuela after an uprisingMore

Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart and Gov. Ron DeSantis were called to a meeting with President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence as Venezuela prepares for a large demonstration by supporters of newly elected president of the National Assembly Juan Guaido against President Nicolas Maduro.

The vice president says the US joins other "freedom-loving" nations in recognizing the popularly elected National Assembly as the "last vestige of democracy" in Venezuela. "We stand with you".

Venezuela's Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez accused Pence of having ordered "terrorists" to carry out acts of violence during Wednesday's protest.

A few hours earlier, a group of guardsmen also reportedly posted videos on social media saying they won't recognize the Maduro government and urged him to leave office.

On May 20-21, at least 11 officers in Venezuela's naval and air forces were detained in the central state of Aragua, home to some of the country's main military units.

On Monday the Venezuelan Defense Ministry said Venezuelan security forces arrested 27 National Guardsmen, after they allegedly revolted against the government of President Nicolas Maduro.

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"They were neutralised, surrendered and captured in record time", said Cabello on Twitter.

Venezuelan opposition leaders are calling for nationwide protests Wednesday. "They only have interests, guts and the ambition to take Venezuela's oil, gas and gold".

An enthusiastic crowd of students answered with shouts of "Freedom!" and "Get out, Maduro!" "It was terrible", 60-year-old Dinora de Longa told AFP. Popping tear gas canisters sent hundreds running and hordes of protesters riding two and three on motorcycles fleeing in panic. I had to put my grandchildren in the bathroom.

But Maduro nevertheless started a second term on January 10, following a widely-boycotted election previous year that many foreign governments described as a sham.

Maduro won elections in May that were boycotted by the opposition and dismissed as a fraud by the European Union, United States and Organization of American States.

Supreme Court president Juan Jose Mendoza read a statement to the press declaring that the legislature "does not have a legitimate board of directors".

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The National Assembly is a 167-seat legislature, now headed by Juan Guaidó of the Popular Will party - a fierce opponent of Maduro, who had been taking part in protests against him and has called for the country's military to depose the president.

The regime has responded by announcing its own demonstration in support of Maduro. More than 120 people were killed in protest-linked incidents during the unrest. We've spent 20 years suffering attacks.

Since 2015, Venezuela has been gripped by a mass shortage in medicine, food and bewildering hyperinflation, which has exceeded one million percent, according to the International Monetary Fund, rendering the currency - the Bolivar - essentially worthless.

The price of oil slipped for the third time in four days Wednesday, an indication that worldwide energy markets are not overly concerned yet that the situation in Venezuela - America's third top oil supplier and owner of Houston-based Citgo - will disrupt global crude supplies.

Its crude production has dropped to barely a third of its level a decade ago.

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