CARACAS, Venezuela – The US has decided to withdraw some of its diplomats from the embassy in Caracas, the Associated Press reported late on the evening of January 24th, citing the State Department.
It is noted that those who are not responsible for particularly important activities will return to the United States, but the diplomatic mission itself will continue to work.
While the U.S mission has begun to buckle under the weight of the reality of their legal expulsion from Venezuela, they may be believe themselves to be engaged in some form of de facto bargaining over the extent of their removal.
On January 23rd, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro broke off diplomatic relations with the United States, accusing Washington of inciting a coup d’état. American diplomats were given 72 hours to leave the country.
The states initially refused to comply with the requirements and declared that Maduro was not recognized as a legitimate president.
In response, Venezuelan authorities threatened to cut the US Embassy in Caracas off from light and gas. In addition, the republic announced the closure of its diplomatic missions in the United States.
On Wednesday, the head of the Venezuelan opposition and parliamentary speaker Juan Guaido declared himself interim president of the country . He was recognized as “legitimate” by the United States, Canada, Brazil, Georgia, Guatemala and a number of other countries.
Russia, China, Cuba and Mexico among many other states, expressed support for the elected president in May 2018, Nicolas Maduro.
At the same time, a ‘quasi- coup d’ état in Venezuela with the support of foreign countries’ was how Moscow characterized the events.
The European Union has been clear on its position – it has no stated opinion on the outcome of the election per se, but has stated no plans to recognize Guaido. The last part would be redundant however, given that Maduro is all three – the elected president, the sitting president (he occupies the president’s office at Palacio de Miraflores) and the acting president (the state apparatus, military, and government under the jurisdiction of the executive branch, all follow his orders, not Guaido’s). In short, the EU continues to recognize Maduro as the president, but Atlanticist pressure upon the EU parliament has resulted in this ‘non-statement’.