Venezuelan Government Bars Guaido From Office for 15 Years Amid US-Backed Coup Attempt

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido delivers a statement after his chief of staff Roberto Marrero was arrested in Caracas, Venezuela on March 21, 2019. (Photo: Rafael Briceno Sierralta--NurPhoto/Getty Images)

Venezuelan Government Bars Guaido From Office for 15 Years Amid US-Backed Coup Attempt

The move was announced by state comptroller general Elvis Amoroso, who cited "inconsistencies" in Guaidó's finances

Venezuela's government said Thursday that it has barred opposition leader Juan Guaido from public office for 15 years as he intensifies his U.S.-backed effort to overthrow President Nicolas Maduro.

The government's move was announced by state comptroller Elvis Amoroso, who cited "inconsistencies in [Guaido's] personal financial disclosures and a spending record that did not match his level of income," according to Reuters. The 15-year punishment is the maximum permitted by law.

Guaido was quick to denounce the government's attempt to ban him from office.

"We're going to continue in the streets," Guaido said on state television after Amoroso's announcement.

As CNBCreported Wednesday, Guaido is gearing up for "a mass mobilization--called 'Operation Freedom'--in a bid to force Maduro to step down."

Guaido declared himself interim president of Venezuela in January, and the United States quickly became the first country to recognize him. Major European nations--including France, Germany, and the U.K.--shortly followed the U.S. in recognizing Guaido.

As Common Dreams reported in January, Vice President Mike Pence called Guaido the night before the announcement and promised that the Trump administration would back him if he attempted to seize power.

National security adviser John Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) were also reportedly involved in behind-the-scenes orchestration with Guaido.

Not surprisingly, Rubio on Thursday used news of Guaido's ban from public office to charge Maduro with launching a "massive wave of targeted repression."

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