Mike Pence: UN must disinvite Maduro, deem Juan Guaido as Venezuelan leader
Vice President Mike Pence told the U.N. on Wednesday it must revoke the credentials of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and follow the lead of more than 50 nations that have recognized Juan Guaido as the South American country’s leader.
Mr. Pence boldly challenged Mr. Maduro’s ambassador to the Security Council, saying he should pack up his things and go home.
“You should return to Venezuela and tell Nicolas Maduro his time is up,” Mr. Pence said. “It’s time for him to go.”
The ambassador looked up from his phone, smirked wryly and nodded in a way that made it clear he didn’t like what he was hearing.
Mr. Maduro, a socialist strongman, is facing a global backlash amid a humanitarian crisis in his country involving widespread hunger and power outages.
His regime is backed by Russia and Cuba, though Mr. Pence said 54 nations in all have spoken with a “clear voice” in backing Mr. Guaido, the National Assembly leader, as interim president.
“It’s time for the United Nations to speak,” the vice president told the security council in New York.
Mr. Pence said the Trump administration will announce additional sanctions against the Maduro regime, on top of previous moves to crack down on state-owned oil and shipping companies and gold mines.
He also said the U.S. will release an additional $60 million in aid on Wednesday, as it seeks a peaceful transition to new leadership.
“But all options are on the table,” Mr. Pence said.