"I would like to welcome the meeting in Montevideo supported by the government of Mexico, Uruguay and 14 countries of the Caribbean Community … I am expressing absolute support of the Venezuelan authorities for any steps and initiatives aimed at backing the dialogue in the country," Maduro said during military drills held in the state of Zulia, as airbed by Venezuela’s state-run TV broadcasters.
Last week, the European Union announced the establishment of the international contact group, which will be coordinated by the European Union and will be operating for a limited time frame of 90 days.
According to Brussels, the group includes the bloc itself and some of its member states, as well as a number of Latin American countries. The contact group’s work will be aimed at creating a common understanding of the situation in Venezuela by key international players and will seek a peaceful resolution of the current crisis in the South American country.
In January, Juan Guaido, the speaker of the opposition-led National Assembly, proclaimed himself Venezuela’s interim president, contesting Maduro's re-election last year. The opposition leader was recognized by the United States and some other countries. Russia and China, as well as several other nations, have backed Maduro as the country's legitimate president and demanded respect for the principle of non-interference in Venezuela's internal affairs. A number of EU member states have also individually recognized Guaido as Venezuela's acting leader.