Venezuela sparks Trump’s OUTRAGE as Maduro arrests Guaido’s deputy

Venezuela sparks Trump’s OUTRAGE as Maduro arrests Guaido’s deputy

Venezuela's Supreme Court has ordered a top deputy of opposition leader Juan Guaido to be held in preventive detention at a military prison in Caracas.

He said General Cristopher Figuera was "the one who orchestrated the coup d'etat" by contacting a group of around 30 members of the armed forces who joined Guaido's mass demonstration.

It's the latest effort by the United States government to ratchet up pressure on the Caracas government and oust Nicolas Maduro from power, reports dpa news on Saturday.

Zambrano's lawyer Lilia Camejo denounced the procedure under which Zambrano, a civilian, was sent to a military prison, and said his rights had been violated.

Zambrano was transferred to the headquarters of the military police in Caracas's largest military complex, Fort Tiuna, the court said.

A Venezuelan opposition lawmaker sought refuge at Argentina's Embassy in Caracas on Thursday, according to an Argentine foreign ministry source and a Reuters witness, a day after the arrest of a top figure in the opposition-controlled legislature. The United States used to be the main buyer of Venezuelan abundant oil, while in the last decade the Russian Federation - mostly through Rosneft - invested and increased its participation in extraction fields and commercialization of Venezuelan oil. "We did not have access to the file, nor could we be appointed in his defense", Camejo told reporters.

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Furthermore, White House officials said that although the president had an affinity for Juan Guaido, he has also "wondered aloud" about how much the USA really knows about him, and questioned whether he is really ready to take over governing the country.

"The regime has kidnapped the first vice president", Mr Guaido said on Twitter.

Last week, Leopoldo Lopez - Guaido's political mentor - moved into Spain's diplomatic residence after escaping house arrest to appear alongside Guaido during his call for the military to rise up. The lawmaker commented on events live on Twitter as they unfolded.

On Wednesday, Edgar Zambrano, the opposition-run National Assembly's vice president, said he had been arrested by intelligence agents.

In January, Guaido invoked the OPEC nation's constitution to assume an interim presidency, arguing President Nicolas Maduro's 2018 re-election was illegitimate.

More than 3 million Venezuelans have left their homeland in recent years amid skyrocketing inflation and severe shortages of food and medicine.

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