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US PRESIDENT Joe Biden has invited Venezuelan opposition politician Juan Guaido to a so-called Summit for Democracy he is set to host later this month, it was confirmed on Tuesday.
Head of US diplomacy for Latin America Brian A Nicholls told a Senate foreign affairs committee that the wannabe usurper had been asked to participate in the virtual gathering.
The two-day summit of some hundred or so nations has been widely criticised, with Russia, Turkey and China barred from attending while Poland, the Philippines and India are among those invited.
Beijing hit out last month at the invitation to Taiwan, which has become the focal point of Washington’s new cold war on China.
It described the inclusion of Taiwan — which the US does not recognise as a country — as “a mistake,” urging Washington to stick to the one-China principle.
The invitation of Mr Guaido has also raised eyebrows with critics warning that it undermines the credibility of the summit.
He is recognised as Venezuela’s interim leader by Mr Biden’s administration despite never having stood for president and not participating in any election for more than six years.
Mr Guaido has been involved in numerous failed coup attempts and is alleged to have signed documents for an operation headed by US mercenaries which ordered the killing or kidnap of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in 2019.
A Bloomberg article last weekend described the summit as “a rallying cry for the world’s more-or-less liberal countries to enter an American-led alliance against the authoritarian powers.”
Mr Biden has spoken of “a global struggle between democracy and autocracy” as he seeks to shore up support for Washington’s increasingly hostile stance towards Russia and China.
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