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Juan Guaidó

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Juan Guaidó
Juan Guaidó restored version.jpg
Acting President of Venezuela
Assumed office
23 January 2019
Disputed with Nicolás Maduro
Preceded byNicolás Maduro
10th President of the National Assembly of Venezuela
Assumed office
5 January 2019
Preceded byOmar Barboza
Federal Deputy for Vargas
Assumed office
5 January 2016
Personal details
Juan Gerardo Guaidó Márquez

(1983-07-28) 28 July 1983 (age 35)
La Guaira, Venezuela
Political partyVoluntad Popular
(Popular Will)
Spouse(s)Fabiana Rosales[1]
Children1 daughter
EducationAndrés Bello Catholic University
George Washington University

Juan Gerardo Guaidó Márquez (Spanish: [ɡwaiˈðo]; born 28 July 1983)[2] is a Venezuelan engineer and politician serving as the President of the National Assembly of Venezuela since 5 January 2019. A member of the centrist social-democratic Popular Will party, he also serves as a federal deputy representing the state of Vargas.

On 23 January 2019, Guaidó took a public oath swearing himself in as acting President of Venezuela in the context of the ongoing presidential crisis, which came into being following the inauguration of Nicolás Maduro as President of Venezuela in January 2019. His claim has been recognized by the Organization of American States [3][4] and several governments, including nations such as Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and the United States,[5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12] but he is rejected by the pro-Maduro Supreme Tribunal of Justice.[13]

Early life and education

One of eight children, Guaidó was raised in a middle-class home by his parents who were an airline pilot and a teacher.[14] One grandfather was a sergeant of the Venezuelan National Guard while another grandfather was a captain in the Venezuelan Navy.[7]

After living through the Vargas tragedy of 1999 which left his family temporarily homeless, Guaidó earned his high school diploma in 2000.[2][15] The tragedy, according to his colleagues, influenced his political views after the then-new government of Hugo Chávez allegedly provided ineffective response to the disaster.[16]

Guaidó later earned his professional license as an industrial engineer after graduating from the Andrés Bello Catholic University in 2007. Guaidó also did postgraduate studies at George Washington University in the United States and at the Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administración.[15]


Guaidó was part of a student-led political movement that protested against the Venezuelan government's decision not to renew the broadcasting license of independent television network RCTV.[17] The group also protested broader attempted reforms of the government by Hugo Chávez, including the constitutional referendum of 2007, which Chávez lost.[18]

Guaidó, along with political figures like Leopoldo López, became founding members of the Popular Will political party in 2009.[19] In 2014, he was the party's national coordinator.[20]

Venezuelan National Assembly

In the 2010 parliamentary elections, Guaidó was elected to a seat as an alternate federal deputy, [21] and was elected to a full seat in the National Assembly in the 2015 elections by earning 97,492 votes (26.01%) of the vote.[22][23] Despite being severely impoverished, a majority of employers in Vargas are government companies, and, thus, until Guaidó's 2015 election, Chavista rule in the state was unchallenged.[16]

In 2017, Guaidó was named head of Comptroller's Commission of the National Assembly and in 2018, he was named head of the legislature's opposition.[15] He also contributed to the research of Jennifer Cyr at the University of Arizona in 2017.[20]

During his time in the National Assembly, Guaidó investigated corruption cases surrounding the Maduro administration, as well as operating alongside independent organizations to return money stolen from the Venezuelan public.[16] He also participated in the 2017 Venezuelan protests and was left scarred on his neck after he was shot by the police with rubber bullets.[24]

President of the National Assembly

Guaidó was elected President of the National Assembly of Venezuela in December 2018, and was sworn in on 5 January 2019. Relatives of imprisoned politicians were invited to the inauguration, gathering on the balcony behind the banner of Juan Requesens.[25] Upon taking office, he vowed to oppose Nicolás Maduro, who has been accused by journalists and analysts of wanting to usurp executive power by remaining in office past the expiration of his presidential term, set to expire on 10 January 2019, officiating an eight-point action plan.[25][26][27] On 15 January 2019, the National Assembly approved legislation that works with dozens of foreign countries to request that these nations freeze Maduro administration bank accounts.[28]

Several Latin American leaders have called for Maduro to turn executive power over to the National Assembly at the end of his term in office, and for new elections to be held in what they saw as an attempt to restore democracy.[29]

Interim President of Venezuela

Assumption of presidential powers and duties

Nations recognizing Guaidó as acting president
     Recognize Guaidó
     Recognize Maduro

After what he and others described as the "illegitimate" inauguration of Maduro on 10 January 2019, Guaidó announced he would challenge Maduro's claim and held a rally the following day, where the National Assembly announced he had assumed the powers and duties of president and they would continue to plan to remove Maduro, contributing to the presidential crisis.[30][31] The Venezuelan foreign minister responded with saying "You see this man, who nobody knows in Venezuela—you ask in the streets, 'Who is Juan Guaidó?' and nobody knows him—but he's being pushed to say that he is the new president, by the U.S".[32]

From early on in his career as Assembly president and then self-proclaimed Acting president in January 2019, it has been noted by reporters and commenters that Guaidó evokes former US President Barack Obama in his presence and movements, and also may have deliberately used the same "rallying cry" as Obama: "Sí, se puede!", Spanish for "Yes we can".[33]

On 15 January 2019, Guaidó wrote an article for The Washington Post, which described and analysed the situation in Venezuela at the time, and stated he was trying to resolve the instability with technical explanations.[34]


Guaidó is recognized as the interim president of Venezuela by Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Denmark, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States.[35][36][37][38][39][40]

Detention and release

While on his way to La Guaira to attend the open cabildo called for 13 January 2019, Guaidó was intercepted by members of the Bolivarian Intelligence Service (SEBIN) and subsequently detained.[41][42][43][44] He was released by authorities 45 minutes later.[14]

The Lima Group condemned the act, as did the secretary of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro. On the same day, he declared himself as acting president. The government attributed the fact that it was carried out unilaterally by the SEBIN personnel involved, and an arrest warrant was issued to the Intelligence Service Commissioner, Idelmaro Múcura, designated as responsible. In this regard, Guaidó declared that after the events it was demonstrated that there was a break in the chain of command in the Armed Forces.[45]

Twelve SEBIN officials were arrested and imprisoned following the event and were held to await trial. They were charged with "illegitimate detention" and "abuse of functions".[46]


  1. ^ "Venezuela's congress names new leader, vows to battle Maduro". 5 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Diputado por Vargas Juan Guaidó" (in Spanish). Popular Will Party. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  3. ^ "Juan Guaidó suma apoyos de la comunidad internacional tras jurar como presidente encargado de Venezuela". Infobae. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  4. ^ "Luis Almagro". Twitter. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  5. ^ "La Argentina reconoció a Juan Guaidó como presidente de Venezuela". Infobae. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  6. ^ "Juan Guaidó se declara presidente da venezuela e tem apoio do brasil". VEJA. Archived from the original on 12 January 2019. Retrieved 12 January 2019.
  7. ^ a b Long, Gideon (13 January 2019). "Venezuela's opposition vows to help end Maduro's rule". Financial Times. Retrieved 15 January 2019. Sebastián Piñera, Chile's president, agreed: 'Chile does not recognise the regime of Nicolás Maduro [we] give our full support to the National Assembly [...] and its new head Juan Guaidó.'
  8. ^ "Rosselló recognizes Juan Guaidó as interim president of Venezuela". Primera Hora. 18 January 2019. Retrieved 19 January 2019.
  9. ^ "Ecuador recognizes Juan Guaidó as the President of Venezuela". El Comercio (Ecuador). 23 January 2019. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  10. ^ "The Government of Peru recognizes Juan Guaidó as the acting President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela". Chancellery of Peru. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  11. ^ Alerts, CBC News (23 January 2019). "BREAKING: Global Affairs Canada tells CBC News that Canada will recognize Juan Guaido as the new president of Venezuela. The opposition leader took an oath in Caracas a short time ago, declaring himself acting president and saying Nicolas Maduro has been deposed". Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  12. ^ "Statement from President Donald J. Trump Recognizing Venezuelan National Assembly President Juan Guaido as the Interim President of Venezuela". The White House. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  13. ^ Venezuelan Top Court Calls for Probe into Illegal Actions of Suspended National Assembly
  14. ^ a b "Venezuela's opposition is gambling it all on a young and untested activist named Juan Guaidó". The Washington Post. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  15. ^ a b c "Guaidó, político de poca experiencia que asume rol crucial". La Patilla (in Spanish). 14 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  16. ^ a b c Zubillaga, Guillermo (9 January 2019). "Meet the New Face of Venezuela's Opposition". Americas Quarterly. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  17. ^ "Juan Guaidó, el presidente más joven de la Asamblea que deberá tomar la decisión más difícil" (in Spanish). NTN 24. 3 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  18. ^ SIMON ROMERO (3 December 2007). "Venezuela Hands Narrow Defeat to Chávez Plan". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  19. ^ "Voluntad Popular will propose Juan Guaidó as president of the National Assembly and ratifies his ignorance of Nicolás Maduro". Voluntad Popular. 20 December 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2019.
  20. ^ a b Cyr, Jennifer (9 June 2017). The fates of political parties : institutional crisis, continuity, and change in Latin America. New York, NY, USA: University of Cambridge Press. p. 259. ISBN 9781107189799. OCLC 986236528.
  21. ^ Rodriguez Rosas, Ronny (20 December 2018). "Voluntad Popular confirma que propondrá a Juan Guaidó para presidir la AN en 2019" (in Spanish). Efecto Cocuyo. Retrieved 5 January 2019.
  22. ^ "Diputado Juan Guaidó ingresó al Palacio Federal Legislativo en compañía de su familia #5Ene" (in Spanish). El Impulso. 5 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  23. ^ "ELECCIONES A LA ASAMBLEA NACIONAL 2015language=es". National Electoral Council of Venezuela. 22 January 2016. Retrieved 5 January 2019.
  24. ^ Daniels, Joe Parkin (15 January 2019). "Who is Juan Guaidó, the opposition leader challenging Maduro's rule?". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  25. ^ a b "Venezuela's opposition vows to help end Maduro's rule". Financial Times. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  26. ^ France-Presse, Agence (5 January 2019). "Venezuela's parliament rejects legitimacy of Maduro second term". ABS CBN News. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  27. ^ Smith, Scott (5 January 2019). "Venezuela's congress names new leader, vows to battle Maduro". ABC News. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  28. ^ "Venezuela congress asks foreign countries to freeze Maduro-linked..." Reuters. 15 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  29. ^ Buitrago, Deisy (5 January 2019). "New Venezuela congress chief says Maduro will be usurper president". Reuters. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  30. ^ Phillips, Tom (2019-01-11). "Venezuela: opposition leader declares himself ready to assume presidency". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  31. ^ "Juan Guaidó: Me apego a los artículos 333, 350 y 233 para lograr el cese de la usurpación y convocar elecciones libres con la unión del pueblo, FAN y comunidad internacional". Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  32. ^ Now, Jorge Arreaza / Amy Goodman-Democracy (21 January 2019). "Jorge Arreaza: Is There a Coup in Progress?". Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  33. ^ Phillips, Tom. "Bolsonaro pressures Venezuelan leader with vow to 're-establish democracy'". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  34. ^ Guaidó, Juan. "Maduro is a usurper. It's time to restore democracy in Venezuela". The Washington Post. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  35. ^ "Many Latin American governments support Venezuela's Guaido". The Washington Post. 23 January 2019. Retrieved 24 January 2019. The United States and all but one member of the Lima Group of regional nations threw their support behind Guaido after he declared himself interim president ...The declaration by the Lima Group ... was signed by Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Paraguay and Peru.
  36. ^ "Ecuador reconoce a Juan Guaidó como presidente interino de Venezuela". El Universo (in Spanish). 2019-01-23. Retrieved 2019-01-24. The President of the Republic Lenin Moreno announced this Wednesday from Davos (Switzerland), that the National Government recognizes Juan Guaidó as president of Venezuela, who was sworn in in Caracas.
  37. ^ "The Latest: Sweden, Denmark back Venezuela opposition leader". The New Zealand Herald. 2019-01-24. ISSN 1170-0777. Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  38. ^ Wagner, Meg. "President Trump and Vice President Pence recognize Juan Guaidó as the President of Venezuela". CNN. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  39. ^ "UK supports Venezuela's Guaido as National Assembly head - PM May's spokesman". Thomson Reuters Foundation. 2019-01-24. Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  40. ^ "Juan Guaidó se proclama presidente de Venezuela; América lo respalda". La Prensa.
  41. ^ "Venezuela opposition leader briefly detained". 13 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019 – via
  42. ^ "Alejandro Baena, candidato liberal a la alcaldía de Cali". Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  43. ^ "Detienen brevemente a Juan Guaidó, presidente de la Asamblea Nacional de Venezuela". Noticieros Televisa (in Spanish). 13 January 2019.
  44. ^ "Los servicios de inteligencia de Nicolás Maduro detuvieron al presidente del Parlamento, Juan Guaidó, y lo liberaron minutos después". Infobae. 13 January 2019. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  45. ^ Redacción, Sala de. "Juan Guaidó desde Vargas: "Hay un presidente legítimo de la AN y de toda Venezuela"". (in Spanish).
  46. ^ "Venezuela: 12 charged in detention of opposition leader". The Washington Post. 16 January 2018. Retrieved 17 January 2018.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Omar Barboza
President of the National Assembly of Venezuela
Preceded by
Nicolas Maduro
President of Venezuela