Venezuela Orders Expulsion of German Diplomat
The Venezuelan government has ordered the expulsion of Germany’s ambassador, citing his alleged support of opposition leader Juan Guaido, who is engaged in a political battle with President Nicolas Maduro.
The government said in a statement that ambassador Martin Kriener had 48 hours to leave for what it said was Kriener’s meddling in Venezuela’s internal affairs. The order came after Kriener met with Guaido at Caracas airport Monday upon Guaido’s return to the country.
Guaido, recognized by the U.S. and about 50 other nations as Venezuela’s interim leader, returned on a commercial flight following a tour of Latin American countries in defiance of a court-imposed travel ban. Guaido called for Maduro’s ouster at a rally shortly after his return.
Venezuela is in the midst of a political and humanitarian crisis that is expected to worsen as U.S. oil sanctions against the country take their toll.
Guaido supporters contend last year’s re-election of Maduro, who is supported by Russia, was invalid.