CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The head of Venezuela's opposition-run congress says he's prepared to step into the nation's presidency to replace Nicolas Maduro, whose inauguration has been rejected as illegitimate by most countries in the hemisphere.
National Assembly President Juan Guaido made the statement to an energized crowd in Caracas on Friday, a day after Maduro's inauguration to a second term.
But Guaido said he'd need support from the public, the armed forces and the international community before assuming the office pending new elections.
He said the constitution assigns him that role if Maduro is illegitimate.
The announcement is a daring challenge to the socialist leader, who has rejected criticism of his re-election and whose government has imprisoned many leading critics.
Maduro accuses the United States and local foes of plotting a coup.