May 6, 2017 / 6:10 PM / 7 months ago

Trump advisor meets with key critic of Venezuela's Maduro

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump’s national security advisor met on Friday with the president of Venezuela’s opposition-led National Assembly and they agreed the political crisis in Caracas should be brought to a quick and peaceful conclusion, the White House said on Saturday.

A woman waves a Venezuelan flag during a women's march to protest against President Nicolas Maduro's government in Caracas, Venezuela May 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

National security advisor H.R. McMaster and Venezuelan National Assembly President Julio Borges discussed “the need for the government to adhere to the Venezuelan Constitution, release political prisoners, respect the National Assembly, and hold free and democratic elections,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer said in a statement.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, facing weeks of anti-government protests, on Monday announced the creation of a new popular assembly which foes decried as a power grab aimed at sidelining the National Assembly. Borges responded by calling on Venezuelans to rebel.

Reporting by Warren Strobel; Editing by Chris Reese

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