Sen. Rubio, Rep. Diaz-Balart visit Venezuela-Colombia border

Sen. Rubio, Rep. Diaz-Balart visit Venezuela-Colombia border

He also said the organization of American states and the Colombian government - along with the USA - stand together with the people of Venezuela.

Mr Rubio said he was confident that US President Donald Trump's administration would not stand by if the Venezuelan government harmed or imprisoned opposition leader Juan Guaido, who declared himself interim president in January.

Guaido, recognized by 50 countries as Venezuela's interim president, has ordered the military to allow in the aid and said one way or another it would enter on Saturday.

Traditional aid groups have shunned the effort as a political ploy, but Guaido is counting on the USA -backed initiative to persuade his country's military to recognize him, and to create an opening for desperately needed relief.

Food supplies, hygiene kits and nutritional supplements have been stockpiled near the Venezuelan border in Cucuta, Colombia. ICRS was echoed by United Nations spokesman Stephen Dujarric who said earlier this month that humanitarian action related to Venezuela should be independent of political or military goals.

"If it doesn't enter on the twenty-third, it will enter on the twenty-fourth, it will enter on the twenty-fifth" of February, he said. The shipments have been meant in part to dramatize hyperinflation and shortages of food and medicine gripping Venezuela.

The White House says Trump will make remarks at Florida International University, as his administration continues to speak out against Venezuela's socialist President Nicolas Maduro.

"Venezuela is preparing for the humanitarian avalanche", Mr Guaido told about 4,000 supporters clad in white T-shirts and green scarves who gathered Saturday to sign up as volunteers.

But Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido has called for crowds to converge on the border to collect the aid.

But it is unclear whether the military will allow aid to cross the border.

Speaking in Spanish, Rubio warned that blocking the entry of US food would amount to a "crime against humanity" and those responsible would spend "the rest of their lives hiding from justice".

Mr Maduro has dismissed the humanitarian assistance as "crumbs" and "rotten and contaminated food" while blaming shortages of food and medicine on U.S. sanctions.

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