Venezuelans stage second pro-Guaido rally in Madrid

Madrid (AFP) –


Hundreds of Venezuelans demonstrated for a second consecutive day in central Madrid on Wednesday in support of their country's self-proclaimed leader Juan Guaido as he bids to overthrow President Nicolas Maduro.

Maduro and his government have vowed to put down what they see as an attempted coup by the US-backed opposition leader.

"Long live the people who fight for freedom. Long live Juan Guaido," said activist Lorent Saleh to a crowd in a central square.

They responded with cries of "freedom, freedom!".

"The situation scares me, for my family. I'm afraid of never being able to go back to my country," said Raquel Monasterios, a 33-year-old medical student who came to support friends and family in Venezuela.

Yineth Labrador, 35, a beautician who has lived in Madrid for a year, called for "free elections in our country, because we want to go back there".

Venezuela has been rocked since January 23 by an unprecedented crisis, after Guaido declared himself the country's interim leader.

He has been recognised by more than 50 countries, including the US and most in Latin America.