Washington: The US “strongly condemns” the Venezuelan military’s use of force, the White House said Friday after troops shot dead two indigenous people who were part of a group trying to keep the country’s border with Brazil open to humanitarian aid.
“The United States strongly condemns the Venezuelan military’s use of force against unarmed civilians and innocent volunteers on Venezuela’s border with Brazil,” a statement said.
“Interim President Juan Guaido has requested immediate humanitarian assistance from the international community for the people of his country, while the Maduro regime has given orders to close the borders and repress those who seek to bring aid into the country.
“The Venezuelan military must allow humanitarian aid to peacefully enter the country. The world is watching.”
Humanitarian aid has become a key focus of the power struggle between President Nicolas Maduro and opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has been recognized as interim leader by more than 50 countries.
The 35-year-old leader of Venezuela’s National Assembly declared himself interim president last month and is calling for fresh polls, branding Maduro a “usurper” and accusing him of rigging his re-election last May.