Venezuelan Ambassador to Iraq Jonathan Velasco Ramirez said on Sunday that he recognized Juan Guaido, the head of the Venezuelan National Assembly who proclaimed himself Venezuelan interim president on 23 January, as the country's leader.

"Our only place is on the side of the people, the constitution, and the National Assembly. Engineer Juan Guaido has the constitutional right and obligation to undertake the responsibilities of the head of the [Bolivarian] Republic [of Venezuela]. Mister Guaido, you are on the right side — that of the history, the people, and the constitution. [Venezuelan President Nicolas] Maduro and his clan of usurpers have crossed the line," Ramirez said in a video address, which Nacional media outlet released.

A week ago, Col. Jose Luis Silva, a military attache at the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, voiced his support for Guaido and called on other Venezuelan officials to follow suit.

Venezuela has been recently going through a political crisis, which further escalated after Guaido declared himself interim president. Constitutionally elected Venezuelan President Maduro accused Washington of trying to orchestrate a state coup in the country after the United States and several of its allies immediately recognized Guaido as legitimate interim president. 

Russia, along with Mexico, Uruguay, China, Iran and Turkey and other states were among the countries that have voiced their support for Maduro as the only legitimate leader.