World / Politics

El Salvador orders Venezuelan diplomats out, recognizes Juan Guaido as rightful leader

AP

El Salvador has ordered the expulsion of Venezuelan government diplomats, joining the U.S. and more than 50 other countries that have said opposition leader Juan Guaido is Venezuela’s rightful leader.

El Salvador said Saturday that the diplomats, who are loyal to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, had 48 hours to leave the country.

The office of Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele is also calling for free elections in Venezuela as a way out of its long-running political and humanitarian crisis.

Guaido, who leads Venezuela’s opposition-controlled congress, declared himself interim president in January, saying Maduro’s re-election last year was fraudulent. Maduro says Guaido is collaborating with the United States in an attempt to stage a coup.

Ronald Johnson, the U.S. ambassador in El Salvador, welcomed the country’s decision to expel pro-Maduro diplomats.