March 21, 2019 / 11:31 PM / 2 months ago

U.S. warns of 'consequences' after Venezuela detains Guaido top aide

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States on Thursday warned of “consequences” against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s security services if they continue with a crackdown against opposition leader Juan Guaido and his aides.

A U.S. State Department spokesman called for the release of Guaido’s chief of staff, Robert Marrero, who was arrested in a pre-dawn raid.

“The detentions show Maduro is betting on repression to hold on to power. It will not stand,” the spokesman said. “There will be consequences for a continued crackdown.”

The spokesman said the arrests were facilitated by Venezuelan Judge Carol Padilla, prosecutors Farid Mora Salcedo and Dinora Bustamante, and Sebin intelligence officials Danny Contreras and Angel Flores, and added the United States and regional partners were considering next steps.

Reporting by Lesley Wroughton; Editing by Sandra Maler

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