Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has pledged that the country's military will do its best to prevent a possible foreign invasion of Venezuela.
"No one, including aggressor soldiers, will enter Venezuela, I assure you. Don't we have the armed forces capable of protecting the country?" Maduro said during an address that was broadcast in his Twitter account on Tuesday.
Earlier, Maduro responded to US President Donald Trump's recent remarks that a US military intervention in Venezuela remains "an option", saying that "talking about the war in the 21st century is madness".
"It is insane to think that you can send troops to this land that will defend itself", Maduro emphasised, describing Trump's remarks as "illegal" and "criminal".
He accused Venezuela's "right-wing conspirators" of applauding Trump and asking him for a military invasion of their own homeland. Maduro said that the "oil and natural resources of our beloved Motherland" are the reason Trump would seek "to declare war against Venezuela".
He added that as of Wednesday, Venezuela will start collecting signatures against the US military intervention in the country.
"There are those who threaten Venezuela with intervention […] On Wednesday, we are launching a great national action to collect signatures across the country, which will then be submitted to the White House in order to reject these [intervention-related] threats," Maduro pointed out.
On Monday, he urged Trump "to stop" and warned the US President of grave consequences if he pursues what Maduro described as a "dirty" imperialist conspiracy to topple him.
"Stop. Stop, Trump! Hold it right there! You are making mistakes that will leave your hands covered in blood and you will leave the presidency stained with blood. Why would you want a repeat of Vietnam?" Maduro said.
He was echoed by Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza, who tweeted late last week that Trump's remarks about a possible military option related to Venezuela confirm that the US President "leads the state coup" against the Latin American country.
Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez also condemned Trump's statement and underscored that the people of Venezuela would not allow any foreign interference.
Earlier, the United States, most Latin American countries and some EU states supported Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido's decision on 23 January to proclaim himself the country's interim president, a move that exacerbated the political crisis in the Latin American country.
Russia, China, Mexico, Turkey, Iran and several other countries stated that they recognise constitutionally-elected Nicolas Maduro as Venezuela's only President.