President Donald Trump spoke Wednesday with Juan Guaidó, Venezuela’s interim president, reaffirming that the United States accepts his presidency as constitutional and legitimate.
The phone call occurred shortly before Guaidó was to head to central Caracas for a protest demanding dictator Nicolás Maduro cede the presidential palace, Miraflores.
Trump expressed his continued support for Guaidó against Maduro, according to the White House.
Guaidó thanked Trump for the support, pointing to the importance of protests in Venezuela against Maduro for refusing to give up power.
“They agreed to maintain regular communication to support Venezuela’s path back to stability, and to rebuild the bilateral relationship between the United States and Venezuela,” according to a White House readout of the call.
Guaidó also acknowledged the call with Trump on Twitter, saying he was “grateful” for the support.
Agradezco la llamada del Presidente de los Estados Unidos, Donald Trump @realDonaldTrump, quien reiteró completo respaldo a nuestra labor democrática, compromiso con la ayuda humanitaria y reconocimiento de su administración a nuestra presidencia (E).
— Juan Guaidó (@jguaido) January 30, 2019
The Trump administration announced sanctions against Venezuela’s state-owned oil company on Monday — a key source of wealth for Maduro’s regime.