Iranian President supports Venezuela's Maduro

Hassan Rouhani says US intervention in Venezuela’s internal affairs is “very ugly.”

Elad Benari ,

Hassan Rouhani
Hassan Rouhani

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has expressed support for Venezuelan embattled President Nicolas Maduro, The Associated Press reported Saturday, citing Iran’s official IRNA news agency.

IRNA’s report said Rouhani met with the Venezuelan envoy to Tehran, Carlos Alcala Cordones, and voiced his support for Maduro’s government.

“We believe the people of Venezuela though unity and standing by the government will defuse the pressures by Washington,” Rouhani was quoted as saying.

The Iranian President described what he termed as US intervention in Venezuela’s internal affairs as “very ugly.”

“Americans basically oppose popular revolution and independent nations,” added Rouhani, according to the report.

US President Donald Trump recognized Juan Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela earlier this month.

Guaido, a member of the center-left Popular Will party and a federal deputy representing Venezuela’s Vargas State declared himself interim president amid an ongoing dispute over last May’s presidential election.

After Maduro was declared the winner, his two challengers refused to concede charging the government of fixing the results to ensure Maduro an additional term.

The contested election led to widespread refusal to recognize Maduro’s inauguration on January 10.

Iran has been a key supporter of Venezuela since the time of Maduro’s predecessor, Hugo Chavez. Former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was a close friend of Chavez and attended his funeral in 2013.

Chavez visited Tehran 13 times between his rise to power in 1999 and his death in 2013. Ahmadinejad visited Venezuela six times after he became Iran's president in 2005.