Feb. 4 (UPI) -- Several European countries have followed the lead of the United States and recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela's new leader.
Britain, Spain, France, Germany, Austria and Denmark all announced they recognize Guaido as the country's president, which came after embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro rejected calls for new elections.
"Maduro has not called presidential elections within eight-day limit we have set," British Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt said on Twitter Monday. "So U.K. alongside European allies now recognizes Guaido as interim constitutional president."
In all, countries that back Guaido as Caracas' new president are Austria, Argentina, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Spain, Sweden and the United States.
Russia slammed the moves to recognize Guaido, saying they interfere in Venezuelan internal politics.
"The imposition of any solutions or the attempt to legitimize the attempt of the power usurpation is, in our viewpoint, the direct and indirect interference in Venezuela's internal affairs."
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian pushed back Monday on the interference charge.
"This is not foreign meddling insofar as there is a crisis and a call from President Guaido to support him in re-establishing democracy," Le Drain told French radio. "We believe there must be elections to validate the choice of Venezuelans."
Maduro has slammed efforts to remove him as coup attempts. Russia and China have reiterated support for his presidency, along with Bolivia, Cuba, Iran, Nicaragua, Syria and Turkey.