Venezuela planning to remove USA officials from state-run oil company

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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.

Venezuela frequently suffers from power cuts, a lack of running water and public transport, while there is also a shortage of doctors and medical supplies in hospitals.

Many members of the Venezuelan military remain loyal to Maduro, mostly in fear of being targeted by the embattled leader.

Guaido said 300,000 people could die if desperately-needed aid isn't brought in.

On Wednesday, one truck tank and two containers were set up at the Tienditas Bridge crossing between Venezuela and Colombia, where the aid is now stored, blocking access to Venezuela.

Russia, Belarus, Bolivia, Iran, China, Cuba, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Syria and Turkey stood up for Maduro's support.

"This is a macabre game: we squeeze them by the neck and make them ask for crumbs".

However, the first shipment of humanitarian aid from the United States arrived Thursday in the Colombian border city of Cucuta, while officials have been working on means of getting them distributed.

"We're going to open a humanitarian corridor and the doors to freedom", he told journalists.

Last week Reuters reported that senior U.S. government officials are in direct talks with the country's military to convince them to back Guaido, who has offered soldiers amnesty to work against the Maduro government.

Guaido says the constitution allows him to assume power, set up a transitional government and hold new elections - one of his key demands that has received widespread global support.

Consultants Eurasia Group said on Thursday that Maduro's traditonal allies Russian Federation and China are "unlikely to lend (him) meaningful support", reinforcing its view that the socialist leader "will be unable to sustain his regime".

It would be understandable if foreign states simply call for new economic and fiscal policies in Venezuela, the end of oppression and the denial of basic human rights and even propose holding fresh elections if there are grounds for disputing the credibility and fairness of the elected president.

Meeting in Uruguay's capital Montevideo on Thursday, the International Contact Group urged "free, transparent and credible presidential elections" in crisis-stricken Venezuela "as soon as possible" to find a peaceful solution to the power struggle between Maduro and Guaido.

Maduro, who last weekend rejected an European Union ultimatum to organise snap presidential elections, fumed: "You don't listen to the truth in Venezuela".

-Question: Would you receive emissaries of the International Contact Group seeking a negotiated solution?

The decision by PDVSA came after Citgo reported of facing financial problems and plunging exports following the imposition of tough sanctions on the oil company by the Donald Trump-led U.S. government, on Friday.