May 1, 2019 / 4:41 PM / 5 months ago

U.S. has done 'exhaustive planning' on Venezuela scenarios: Shanahan

Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan testifies before a House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee hearing on the Department of Defense - FY2020 Budget request on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said on Wednesday the United States had carried out “exhaustive planning” on Venezuela and had contingency plans for different scenarios, adding that the focus was on diplomatic and economic pressure.

“We are working this as a whole of government and when people say there are all options are on the table, they literally are. But we work it as much diplomatically and economically to impose pressure,” Shanahan said during a House Appropriations hearing.

“We have done exhaustive planning, so there is not a situation or scenario that we don’t have a contingency for,” Shanahan added.

Venezuela’s U.S.-backed opposition leader Juan Guaido is facing a key test of support after calling for the “largest march” in the country’s history to try to dislodge President Nicolas Maduro.

Reporting by Idrees Ali and Mike Stone, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien

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