Venezuelan opposition welcomes Canada's call for military backing

Venezuela's pro-democracy movement has welcomed the decision by Canada and its allies to urge its country's military to support the political opposition to Nicolas Maduro's regime.

The declaration in the final Lima Group communique from yesterday's emergency meeting in Ottawa came two days after the defection of a top air-force general, once loyal to Maduro.

The Lima Group's meeting comes amid massive protests in Venezuela pressing Maduro to go.

The group built on that backing in its final communique by calling upon ``the National Armed Forces of Venezuela to demonstrate their loyalty to the interim president in his constitutional functions as their commander-in-chief.''

Orlando Viera-Blanco, Guaido's representative to Monday's Ottawa meeting, said the decision was a key step in freeing his country from its economic and political crisis.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland branded the Maduro government a dictatorship.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland explained that Canada is not advocating that the military take any forceful action against Maduro, but just support Juan Guaido who says he is interim president.