By Sibel Ugurlu
Israel on Sunday recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as the acting president of the South American country.
"Israel joins the United States, Canada, most of the countries of Latin America and countries in Europe in recognizing the new leadership in Venezuela," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a tweet.
Venezuela has been rocked by protests since Jan. 10 when President Nicholas Maduro was sworn in for a second term following a vote boycott by the opposition.
On Wednesday, Guaido, the leader of Venezuela’s opposition-led National Assembly, declared himself acting president.
U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Guaido as president of the country.
Maduro quickly shot back, cutting off diplomatic relations with Washington and giving U.S. diplomats 72 hours to leave the country.
He has repeatedly lashed out at the U.S., saying Washington is waging an economic war against him and his government amid a sweeping sanctions campaign.
Brazil and the Organization of American States recognized Guaido as Venezuela's leader prior to his formal announcement. Argentina, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Panama and Paraguay have followed suit while Bolivia and Mexico continue to recognize Maduro.
Several South American countries, Russia, Turkey, China and Iran have also expressed solidarity with Maduro.
European heavyweights -- including the U.K., Germany, France and Spain -- took a similar stance against Venezuela's elected president and called on Maduro to announce fresh elections within next eight days to ease the current political crisis in the south American nation.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.