Current Events


Battle for control of Venezuela as a 35-year-old opposition leader names himself president amid massive protests.

Current Events

Names to Know:

  • Juan Guaidó: New, young opposition leader, called for anti-gov’t protests on Wednesday where tens of thousands demonstrated & he took an oath to be president.
  • Nicolás Maduro: Re-elected president in May 2018 in what many called a “sham” election. In early January, sworn in for a second, 6-year term.
Current Events

Why Are They Protesting?

  • Venezuela is in economic collapse: food, medicine shortages & soaring inflation.
  • Those able to find work make $18/month, up from $2 after Maduro mandated a minimum wage hike in 2018.
  • 2.3M+ fled in past 2 yrs (equal to population of Houston, TX), most to other parts of Latin America
  • Pervasive violence & corruption.
Current Events

Why Venezuela Matters:

  • Mass Exodus: U.S. asylum applications went up 161% in 2016, 2nd most (behind China).
  • Democracy In Peril: Illness, starvation & violence vs. citizens.
  • Foreign Interests: Owes $20B+ from loans & arms deliveries from the likes of Russia & China.
  • Energy: Sits on more oil than Saudi Arabia & exports to U.S. (production at 30-year low).
Current Events

“President Trump and the U.S. stand resolutely with the Venezuelan people as they seek to regain their liberty from dictator Nicolás Maduro.”

Vice President Mike Pence as international pressure mounts against Maduro's regime. On Wednesday, President Trump, along with Canada, the EU & several South American nations formally recognized opposition leader Guaidó as the interim president.
Current Events

“Let’s imagine… the speaker of the U.S. House of Reps declaring herself the new president… What would be the reaction from the current U.S. president, especially if this move was supported by the leadership of another country, for example, Russia?”

Dmitry Medvedev, Fmr. Russian Prime Minister, raising support for Maduro, who has called Guaidó a "puppet" for America. China & Turkey have joined Russia in support of Maduro.
Current Events

Maduro moved quickly to cut U.S. ties, ordering out all employees. America says diplomats will stay at Guaidó's invitation. Something to Watch: Venezuela's military & who they support.

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