Venezuela’s self-proclaimed President Juan Guaido is still insisting on allowing international aid into the crisis-hit country, even allowing military intervention.
Guaido was speaking while the country was on its sixth day of power blackout and lack of water since last Thursday.
Guaido went further to announce a “national state of emergency” that will allow seeking international cooperation or foreign intervention.
“This could include military intervention,” Guaido told CNN at the weekend. US officials said all options were on the table with Venezuela, however, at this point, military intervention was not likely.
In a rally on Saturday, President Nicolas Maduro criticized the calls for a military intervention in Venezuela: “If it happens, both pro-opposition and pro-government groups will be affected.”
Power cut a result of years of corruption
The opposition leader saw the reasons for the power cut as a result of corruption and years of incompetence under Maduro’s government.
Maduro, on the other hand, called the nation-wide blackout as an “electronic coup” carried out by the “imperialist government of the United States,” while not offering any proof for it.
The electric authority announced that power has slowly been re-established across the country.
Though electricity had largely returned to Caracas, the capital city, much of Venezuela remained without power, Reuters reported on Monday.
Power crisis largely affecting hospitals
One of the worst side effects of the blackout is lack of water. Many worry about the spread of disease.
The power cut has also resulted in a crisis in hospitals. “15 dialysis patients have died as a result of the blackout and some 10 000 more were at risk if they continue without treatment,” said independent health watchdog Codevida, according to Wall Street Journal.
In an effort to restore power after blackouts, Maduro ordered schools, government entities, and businesses not to open. The suspension was to continue on Tuesday and Wednesday.
One country, two Presidents at war
Venezuela has been experiencing political unrest for months over the contested presidential election.
Opposition leader Guaido declared Maduro’s re-election a fraud and invoked the constitution to assume the interim presidency. He has been recognized as a legitimate leader by the U.S. and most Western countries.
Backed by Russia and China, Maduro still retains control of armed forces and state institutions.