[Venezuela], May 5 (ANI): Acknowledging errors made during the recent coup attempt to overthrow Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, National Assembly head Juan Guaido conceded that the opposition had miscalculated military support for the failed uprising.
"We are confronting a wall that is an absolute dictatorship...We have recognised our mistakes - what we didn't do, and (what) we did too much of," Guaido told The Washington Post in an exclusive interview.
This comes amidst mounting civil and political unrest in the Latin American country. On April 30, opposition leader Guaido declared he was "beginning the final phase of Operation Freedom," in an apparent bid to oust Maduro. In the clashes that ensued between anti-government protesters and law enforcement forces in Caracas, at least 71 people were injured.
"Because the fact that we did what we did and it didn't succeed on the first time, doesn't mean it's not valid," he said, adding that the Opposition was seeking to get through to military personnel loyal to Maduro.
While calls for the Opposition to hold talks with Maduro are on the rise, the self-proclaimed President of Venezuela reiterated his stance to hold talks only with the precondition of negotiating Maduro's departure.
"Sitting down with Maduro is not an option. That happened in 2014, in 2016, in 2017...The end of usurpation is a precondition to any possible dialogue," he reinforced.
He also responded to the lukewarm turnout for a march he called on Saturday, the second after the uprising on April 30.
"We have been doing this for 20 years," he said, talking about the rise of leftist Hugo Chavez, whose chosen successor is the current Venezuelan President Maduro.
"Getting frustrated and tired is part of it, but Venezuelans have demonstrated that they always take the fight again when they have to," the National Assembly head told the Post.
The opposition leader declared himself as the President of Venezuela during protests in January -- a move which was immediately backed by the United States. Guaido currently enjoys recognition as the official interim President of Venezuela by over 50 countries, including France, Japan, UK, USA amongst others.
Even though there have been recurring calls for Maduro to resign -- after calls to hold fresh elections failed -- the leftist leader continues to hold on to his post, claiming that he enjoys the steadfast support of the Venezuelan armed forces. (ANI)