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Opposition Leader Briefly Held After Saying Ready To Become Interim President

Source: British Broadcasting Corp.

January 14 2019


The head of Venezuela's opposition-controlled Parliament has been released following a brief detention, reports BBC News. 

On Sunday, Juan Guaido was stopped by intelligence agents north of Caracas while traveling to a rally in Caraballeda on the coast, reported Reuters. 

He was released after being held for an hour. The police blamed the arrest on rogue agents, who were fired. 

The move was likely designed to send a message to opponents of President Nicolas Maduro, who was sworn in for a second term on Jan. 10. 

Few countries have recognized the election, which was said to have been fraudulent. 

Guaido has said he is ready to assume the presidency on an interim basis. 

Last week, Reuters reported that the opposition-led Parliament was drafting legal measures that would grant immunity to members of the military who defect from the Maduro government. 

While unlikely to be upheld by the pro-Maduro Supreme Court, it was the first publicly-reported sign that the opposition was actively trying to court members of the military away from the president. 

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