Venezuela’s opposition leader Juan Guaido say he is set to r-enter the country, where he could be arrested by the authorities in Caracas for violating a travel ban imposed on him by the Supreme Court.
In a tweet, Guido announced his departure from a naval air base in the Ecuadorian coastal town of Salinas on Sunday, without disclosing his location.
The opposition chief said he will be arriving in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas to lead fresh anti-government protests later on Monday and Tuesday.
“I announce my return to the country and I call for mobilizations in all the national territory, I am calling on the Venezuelan people to mobilize all over the country tomorrow at 11:00 am (1500 GMT),” Guaido wrote in a Twitter message. “We are much stronger than ever, and it is not time to falter.”
“If the regime dares to kidnap us, it will be the last mistake they make,” Guaido said.
Guaido, who heads the defunct National Assembly, pushed the country into a new political crisis in January, when he suddenly declared himself as “interim president” of Venezuela, disputing the outcome of last May’s election, in which President Nicolas Maduro emerged victorious.
He was recognized by the US as well as dozens of its Latin American and European allies.
The crisis has worsened the country’s woes, including hyperinflation and widespread shortages of food and medicine.
The opposition leader, who is accused in Venezuela of trying to foment a US-backed coup d’état against the Maduro government, had been banned from traveling abroad by the Supreme Court.
Guaido, however, defied that travel ban and left Venezuela for meetings with the leaders of Paraguay, Argentina, Ecuador and Brazil during the past few days to build pressure on Caracas and facilitate what is claimed to be humanitarian aid delivery to Venezuelan people.
The army, which has remained loyal to Maduro, however, blocked convoys of trucks from Colombia and Brazil. The Caracas government sees the humanitarian aid as part of Guaido’s Washington-backed coup plot.