By Benjamin Norton – Jan 28, 2022
A right-wing Venezuelan opposition leader and former top Juan Guaidó functionary admitted a maximum of 15 countries recognize the unelected coup leader as “interim president.” The Joe Biden administration is one of them.
January 23, 2022 marks the third anniversary of the US government’s ongoing coup attempt against Venezuela’s only constitutional government, that of democratically elected President Nicolás Maduro.
On that day in 2019, the Donald Trump administration appointed little-known Venezuelan opposition politician Juan Guaidó, who had never received a single vote in a presidential election, as supposed “interim president” of the Caribbean nation.
At the peak of the US-led coup attempt, fewer than 60 of the 193 UN member states recognized Guaidó. And that number has dropped precipitously since then.
One of Guaidó’s top former functionaries, the right-wing Venezuelan opposition politician Julio Borges, has admitted in an interview that a maximum of just 15 countries still recognize Guaidó as of January 2022.
Major Western media outlets have acknowledged that Guaidó does not actually control anything inside Venezuela, other than what the United States stole for him.
Yet the Joe Biden administration has maintained Trump’s policy of support for Guaidó.
This recognition has continued despite November 2021 regional elections in Venezuela, which were observed by the European Union, in which Guaidó’s party faced a crushing defeat, and the United Socialist Party (PSUV) of President Maduro won in a landslide.
The nations that still refuse to recognize Venezuela’s constitutional President Maduro consist primarily of the United States and its right-wing allies in Latin America, including Colombia, Brazil, Guatemala, Paraguay, and Ecuador, along with the Washington-controlled Organization of American States (OAS).
The Liberal Justin Trudeau government of Canada still backs Guaidó as well.
Britain is one of the only remaining European countries that refuses to acknowledge Maduro – partially because, by continuing to formally recognize Guaidó, it provides a judicial excuse for the Bank of England to steal nearly $2 billion worth of Venezuelan gold.
Guaidó’s coup regime in fact used money illegally seized from Venezuela’s Central Bank to pay legal costs in the UK, in its efforts to control these billions of dollars worth of looted Venezuelan gold, journalist John McEvoy revealed.
Even Spain, which harbors Venezuelan fugitives from justice who organized violent coup attempts against the Chavista government, no longer really recognizes Guaidó.
Perhaps the most powerful member of Venezuela’s political opposition, Leopoldo López, a right-wing extremist from an ultra-wealthy oligarch family, lives in Madrid, where he has enjoyed the support of the Spanish government. This is despite the fact that López admitted to orchestrating violent coup attempts and plotting a failed invasion of Venezuela in May 2020, known as Operation Gideon.
In an implicit admission that all of these efforts at overthrowing Venezuela’s legitimate government had failed, the European Union stopped recognizing Guaidó as of January 2021.
Julio Borges, the Venezuelan opposition politician who said a maximum of just 15 countries still recognize Guaidó, knows from firsthand experience.
Borges previously served as so-called “foreign minister” for Guaidó’s parallel coup regime, which has never exercised power inside Venezuela and was never voted on by the Venezuelan people.
Borges resigned from Guaidó’s coup regime in December 2021, saying the unelected “interim government has been deformed,” and “it should disappear.”
Featured image: File photo.
Benjamin Norton is the founder and editor of the independent news website Multipolarista, where he does original reporting in both English and Spanish. Benjamin has reported from numerous countries, including Venezuela, Nicaragua, Bolivia, Ecuador, Honduras, Colombia, and more. His journalistic work has been published in dozens of media outlets, and he has done interviews on Sky News, Al Jazeera, Democracy Now, El Financiero Bloomberg, Al Mayadeen teleSUR, RT, TRT World, CGTN, Press TV, HispanTV, Sin Censura, and various TV channels in Mexico, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Bolivia. Benjamin writes a regular column for Al Mayadeen (in English and Spanish). He was formerly a reporter with the investigative journalism website The Grayzone, and previously produced the political podcast and video show Moderate Rebels. His personal website is BenNorton.com, and he tweets at @BenjaminNorton.