Published: Fri, March 15, 2019

All US diplomats have left Venezuela, says Mike Pompeo

All US diplomats have left Venezuela, says Mike Pompeo

"The United States government, at all levels, remains firm in its resolve and support for the people of Venezuela and Interim President Juan Guaido", Pompeo added. "US diplomats will now continue that mission from other locations where they will continue to help manage the flow of humanitarian assistance to the Venezuelan people and support the democratic actors bravely resisting tyranny".

The United States had withdrawn most of the diplomatic staff from the embassy five weeks ago, leaving a core group behind.

USA diplomats began the exodus from the Caracas, Venezuela, embassy earlier this week.

The American flag flying outside the U.S. Embassy in the Venezuelan capital is lowered as the last remaining diplomats leave the country. He said staffers look forward to resuming their presence in Venezuela "once the transition to democracy begins".

The Venezuelan government disputed Pompeo's account, saying it had instructed the USA diplomats to leave.

Palladino also warned followers of the embattled Nicolas Maduro not to harass US -backed leader Juan Guaido.

This Sept. 12, 2008 photo shows the US embassy in Caracas, Venezuela.

The United States is one of about 50 countries that have thrown their support behind opposition leader Guaido, who has announced himself "interim president" after last year's disputed election.

The country began returning to normal Thursday following a near-total weeklong blackout that the government has blamed on what it calls sabotage encouraged by the US. US officials and Guaido said the allegation is absurd and that government corruption and mismanagement caused the infrastructure collapse in a country already suffering hyperinflation and shortages of basic goods. Since Monday, the USA has revoked 340 visas, 107 of which were for Venezuelan diplomats and their families, according to Palladino.

"I congratulate him for the work he did", Maduro said in a speech Tuesday night.

Morales, who is on a visit to Greece, said meddling in the domestic affairs of another country never bodes well. Bolivia's left-wing president on Thursday compared Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido to an erstwhile colonial viceroy and spoke out against any military intervention in the troubled country.

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