Following are some initial reactions from world governments over the attempted coup called by self-proclaimed leader Juan Guaido against President Nicolas Maduro.

Military members gesture near the Generalisimo Francisco de Miranda Air Base
Military members gesture near the Generalisimo Francisco de Miranda Air Base "La Carlota," in Caracas, Venezuela, April 30, 2019. (Reuters)

Venezuela was plunged into heightened chaos on Tuesday after self-proclaimed leader Juan Guaido said he had the support of troops to oust President Nicolas Maduro, while the government denounced an attempted coup and said it was "deactivating a small group of treacherous military personnel."

Following are some initial reactions from world governments:


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned the coup attempt in Venezuela.     

"We, as a country, which has experienced coups and their negative consequences, condemn coup bid in Venezuela," Erdogan said on Twitter.     

The world has to respect the democratic choices of the people in Venezuela, he added.     

"Those who attempt to appoint a post-modern colonial governor to Venezuela, where the people are sovereign and where President comes through elections, should know only democratic elections determined the way to govern the country," Erdogan said.     

"Concerned about news that there are some attempts against the constitutional order in #Venezuela. Oppose attempts to change legitimate governments via non-democratic means," Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Twitter.

Cavusoglu said Turkey is in favour of settling issues in the country through dialogue and that his country is with the people of Venezuela.

UN chief 

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres appealed to all sides in Venezuela to avoid violence after self-proclaimed leader Guaido said he had the support of troops to oust President Maduro.

Guterres "urges all sides to exercise maximum restraint, and he appeals to all stakeholders to avoid any violence and take immediate steps to restore calm," said UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric.


Russia accused Venezuela's US-backed opposition leader Guaido of fomenting violence and urged talks, saying it was important to avoid bloodletting.

"The radical opposition in Venezuela has once again turned to heavy-handed methods of confrontation," the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement, accusing opponents of President Maduro of "fuelling" conflict.

"It is important to avoid unrest and bloodletting," said the foreign ministry, urging talks between the conflicting sides.

United States

The United States on Tuesday threw its full weight behind Guaido, as the opposition leader said troops had joined his campaign to oust President Maduro.

"Today interim President Juan Guaido announced start of Operacion Libertad," tweeted Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

"The US Government fully supports the Venezuelan people in their quest for freedom and democracy. Democracy cannot be defeated," Pompeo wrote.


Mexico expressed concern over possible escalation of violence and bloodshed in Venezuela.

The Foreign Relations Department issued a statement reiterating its willingness to seek a peaceful resolution through dialogue and says it is in contact with other countries with the goal of "finding a common path."

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador repeated in a Tuesday morning news conference that he believes in nonintervention and dialogue.

Mexico is not among the nations that have recognised opposition leader Guaido, who has declared himself the rightful leader of Venezuela in a challenge to President Maduro.


Brazil's Foreign Relations Minister Ernesto Araujo said that his country supports a democratic transition in Venezuela.

Araujo said in a press conference in Brasilia that the Brazilian government expects Venezuela's military to get behind Guaido on Tuesday and push Maduro out of power.


Colombia's President Ivan Duque called on Twitter for "soldiers and the people of Venezuela to place themselves on the right side of history, rejecting dictatorship and Maduro's usurption."

Colombia also said it was calling an emergency meeting of the Lima Group – a grouping of major Latin American nations plus Canada focused on Venezuela.


Bolivian President Evo Morales "vigorously" condemned the "attempted coup in Venezuela by the right-wing that is beholden to foreign interests."

He said he was sure that "the brave Bolivarian Revolution led by brother Nicolas Maduro will beat this new attack by the empire [the US]."


"We strongly hope that there will be no bloodshed," Spanish government spokeswoman Isabel Celaa told reporters.

She called for "democratic elections" and said Madrid supports a peaceful outcome to the Venezuela crisis.

Celaa said Madrid thinks Guaido "is legitimate to carry out the transformation of Venezuela."

But she added, "Spain is not supporting any military coup."

United Kingdom

"We have been clear that the UK, alongside its international partners, recognises Juan Guaido as the constitutional interim president of Venezuela until credible presidential elections can be held," a spokesman for British Prime Minister Theresa May said.

"Our focus is on a peaceful resolution to the crisis and the restoration of Venezuelan democracy. Venezuelan people deserve a better future, they have suffered enough and the Maduro regime must end."


"We reject this coup movement that aims to fuel violence in the country," Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel said on Twitter.

"The traitors that have put themselves at the head of this subversive movement are using troops and soldiers with heavy weapons in a public area of the city to create panic and terror."


"We are following very closely the situation in Venezuela. Peru has already stated its position, through its foreign minister. We completely support the fight of Interim President Juan Guaido to regain democracy in Venezuela.

"The illegitimate and dictatorial regime of Nicolas Maduro needs to end. That's our position. We are in touch with the members of the Lima Group to consider an emergency meeting, given the circumstances. 

"We are following the situation very closely. We met yesterday with the Secretary General, a meeting in which the Lima Group also presented its position, which is basically the necessity of the urgent return to democracy in Venezuela", Peruvian Ambassador to the United Nations, Gustavo Meza-Cuadra, told reporters.


"We follow very closely (the situation in Venezuela). I'm also in touch with my colleague from Peru who is of course following in with what is decided in the Lima Group. The Lima Group is meeting and we see what repercussions that has. We are ready to do whatever is needed to do in the situation as we are following right now.

"I personally have not received any (request for a meeting) but we are open for this. We have 24 hours on this", German Ambassador to United Nations, Christoph Heusgen, told reporters.

European Commission

A European Commission spokeswoman said it was following developments but declined to comment on the fast-developing situation beyond repeating the bloc's long-standing call for a "political and peaceful solution" and "free and fair elections."

However, European Parliament speaker Antonio Tajani hailed the release of leading Venezuelan opposition figure Leopoldo Lopez from house arrest as a "historic moment."

He tweeted that it was an important step in Venezuela's "return to democracy and freedom."

Lopez is a winner of the Sakharov Prize, an annual human rights award presented by the European Parliament.

Source: AFP