US President Donald Trump has announced that he recognises Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó as interim president.
The announcement came minutes after Guaidó declared himself acting leader in Caracas on Wednesday.
A number of South American countries, including Brazil, Colombia and Peru, have also recognised Mr Guaidó as Venezuela’s legitimate president.
It comes amid mass protests against President Nicolás Maduro who has overseen years of economic freefall.
After Trump’s announcement, Maduro cut diplomatic ties with U.S. he has given American diplomats 72 hours to leave the country.