Opposition leader Guaido says his imprisonment would be one of Maduro's last mistakes

Juan Guaido. Photograph:( Reuters )

Agencia EFE Caracas, Capital District, Venezuela Mar 04, 2019, 10.55 AM (IST)

Venezuela’s self-proclaimed interim president said Sunday that if he is arrested upon his planned return to the country, it would be one of the last mistakes ever made by his country’s government.

Juan Guaido was broadcasting live on social networks to give details of the visit he made to five Latin American countries and called for a “mass protest” for Monday at 11 am upon his return.

"If the regime dares to abduct me, it will be one of the last mistakes, no doubt, that (President Nicolas Maduro’s government) will make," Guaido, who has been recognized by more than 50 countries, said.

The head of parliament assured that in the event that he is detained - because he flouted a travel ban placed on him by a court - his international allies, headed by the United States government, have "clear instructions." He did not reveal further details.

The government would be carrying out "a coup d'état" if he is arrested, he said, and in the face of this, he has left "very clearly the steps to follow," which include the mobilization of citizens through public demonstrations.

"I appreciate the support given to us by our brother countries Colombia, Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina and Ecuador during our international tour. Thanks to all the peoples of the region who are with us in this crusade that transcends left and right," he said on Twitter.

His followers called for rallies in Venezuela's 23 states as well as in Caracas, where he is expected to reappear in public.

To date, Maduro's main detractor has kept secret the details of how he plans to re-enter Venezuela after circumventing the travel ban last week when he walked across the border into Colombia.

So far neither the Attorney General's Office, nor the Supreme Court, nor any of the top leaders of the so-called Bolivarian Revolution have spoken out about Guaido's return, but his closest circle considers the threat of detention to be real.

US National Security Advisor John Bolton warned against the arrest of Guaido in a tweet Sunday.

“Any threats or acts against his safe return will be met with a strong and significant response from the United States and the international community,” Bolton said.
 

Story highlights

Juan Guaido was broadcasting live on social networks to give details of the visit he made to five Latin American countries and called for a “mass protest” for Monday at 11 am upon his return.