The US is holding direct communications with members of Venezuela's military, urging them to abandon President Nicolas Maduro and is also preparing new sanctions aimed at increasing pressure on him, a senior White House official said.
With so much political spin coming from every side in the Venezuelan crisis, perhaps it's no surprise the very meaning of humanitarian aid has been lost, too.
The US continues to try to impose a long-sought regime change in Venezuela, a lot of the pieces have already fallen into place, to the point that the US is already backing a "new" government there, and demanding that the world do the same. Simultaneously, President Donald Trump's administration has been urging Venezuelan officers to defect and support the opposition's claim to power. To convince those on-the-fence members to abandon Maduro, the U.S. must offer something that makes a turncoat move worthwhile, noted Eric Farnsworth, vice president of the Council of the Americas think tank in Washington.
Guaido is trying to bring in food and medicine from the United States but supplies are stuck in warehouses in Colombia as the Venezuelan military has blocked their entry.
Maduro, after launching a signature-gathering campaign against alleged U.S. interference, has repeatedly stressed his sentiment that the main objective behind Washington's interest in the political outcome in Venezuela is the nation's oil reserves, said to the largest in the world.
"This is a macabre game: we squeeze them by the neck and make them ask for crumbs".
The United States bends the definition of "humanitarian aid" to advance its political interests in Venezuela.
Early Wednesday, a Venezuelan military boat carrying 100 tons (tonnes) of aid landed in Havana to help Cubans recovering from the wrath of a tornado.
RBI Policy: MPC Cuts Repo Rate by 25 Basis Points to 6.25%
However, inflation dropping to a 18-month low of 2.19% in December appears to have prompted the MPC to go in for a cut. It was the first policy review by the RBI after appointment of its governor Shaktikanta Das in December past year .
The US, EU and many Latin American countries branded it a fraud as prominent opposition leaders were unable to stand after being exiled, jailed or barred.
Guaido is trying to force Maduro from power, aiming to set up a transitional government and hold presidential elections.
A number of Venezuelan leaders have appealed to the military to allow the relief supplies into the country, but those calls have been rejected by the country's embattled president, who has the support of the army.
Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying's statement came in response to a question about a meeting Thursday of an "International Contact Group" led by Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez and attended by leaders of 14 countries, including Spain, Italy, Portugal and Sweden.
"Only this way can Venezuela realising lasting stability".
Philip Gunson is senior analyst for Venezuela at the International Crisis Group, and is based in Caracas.
The Contact Group chided Maduro over the deaths of 40 opposition protesters last month and told him to respect "the country's institutions, particularly the democratically elected National Assembly".
On Friday, the Supreme Court asked the attorney general's office to investigate alleged "criminal" conduct by Guaido and the legislature over the "usurpation of functions" that correspond to Maduro.