Backers 'failed to follow through' in abortive uprising, Guaido tells AFP

Caracas (AFP) –


Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido said Monday that people who had pledged support for his abortive uprising last week had "failed to follow through" to dislodge President Nicolas Maduro.

"There were people who failed to follow through," Guaido told AFP in an interview in Caracas, adding that "it doesn't mean that they won't do it soon."

Guaido, recognized as interim president by more than 50 countries, said it was "obvious today, there is widespread discontent from which the armed forces aren't immune."

"We are very close to achieving change in Venezuela," he said.

National Assembly head Guaido, 35, has branded Maduro a usurper over his controversial re-election last year, and in January declared himself acting president, plunging Venezuela into a political crisis that deepened its already grave economic woes.

But Maduro has held firm, bolstered by the continued support of the powerful armed forces.