Venezuela's government announced that it is quitting the Organisation of American States, accusing the regional body of meddling in its internal affairs over weeks of political unrest.
The step was taken Wednesday just hours after violent clashes in the capital of Caracas between security forces and protesters during another march against government of President Nicolas Maduro.
The government has been held responsible for 29 civilian deaths that have taken place after nearly four weeks of anti-government demonstrations. A march for Thursday has been organised to honour a college student who lost his life in the most recent protest.
State vs The Organisation of American States
The Organisation of American States is a continental organisation that exists for the purposes of regional solidarity and cooperation among its member states, which include all nations from North and South America.
The body had sought to broker peace between the Venezuelan people and their government. However, on 27 April, Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez said that President Nicolas Maduro plans to to publicly renounce Venezuela's membership .
President Nicolas MaduroIn the OAS, we announced that if these intrusive, arbitrary, illicit, misdirected and rude actions were to persist against the sovereignty of our country, we would immediately proceed to denounce the letter of OAS and to initiate the definite withdrawal of Venezuela from this regional organisation.
On Wednesday, thousands of protesters marched on Caracas' main highway to demand the resignation of the President, but were met with plumes of tear gas that sent demonstrators running.
"The repression is very strong," Luis Florido, an opposition lawmaker, said as clouds of white gas swirled around him.
In totality, 29 people have been killed, more than 400 injured and nearly 1,300 detained in the month-long unrest roiling the nation.
(With inputs from AP, Reuters)