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    Juan Guaido, president of National Assembly, shows marks on his wrists, which he says are from handcuffs, to supporters at a rally in Caraballeda, Venezuela, Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019. The new head of Venezuela's increasingly defiant congress was pulled from his vehicle and briefly detained by police Sunday, a day after the U.S. backed him assuming the presidency as a way out of the country's deepening crisis. Guaido's wife Fabiana Rosales stands next to him, right. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

    UK Alleged Refusal to Pull Out Venezuela's Gold ‘Protection of Assets’ - Guaido

    © AP Photo / Fernando Llano
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    BUENOS AIRES (Sputnik) - Venezuelan opposition leader and self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guaido lauded on Saturday the Bank of England’s alleged refusal to withdraw Venezuela’s gold worth $1.2 billion, requested by President Nicolas Maduro.

    “The process of protecting the assets of Venezuela has begun. We will not allow more abuse and theft of money intended for food, medicine and the future of our children,” Guaido wrote on Twitter.

    READ MORE: Venezuela Opposition Head Declared Himself President After Pence's Call — Report

    Earlier in the day, the Bloomberg news agency reported, citing sources, that the Bank of England had denied Caracas’ request to pull out gold bars after US State Secretary Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton lobbied the UK government to cut off the Venezuelan leadership’s access to foreign assets.

    On Wednesday, Guaido declared himself the interim president of Venezuela. The United States shortly afterward urged President Nicolas Maduro to step down and let Guaido assume his post. The United Kingdom has joined the US calls.

    Maduro in response called the opposition leader "a US puppet" and accused the United States of organizing a coup in Venezuela. The Venezuelan president also decided to cut off diplomatic relations with Washington.

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    Political Crisis in Venezuela (566)

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