Brussels - The European Union has warned the Venezuelan government not to arrest opposition leader Juan Guaido, who is seeking to overthrow President Nicolas Maduro.
"Any measure that could put at risk Juan Guaidó's freedom, safety or personal integrity would represent a major escalation of tensions and meet the firm condemnation of the international community," the EU'S top diplomat, foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, said.
"The members of National Assembly enjoy constitutionally granted immunity that needs to be fully respected," she wrote in a statement issued on behalf of EU member states on Saturday.
The opposition-dominated National Assembly is headed by Guaido, who declared himself interim president of Venezuela on January 23 in response to dire conditions in the country, whose economy has been in free fall for years.
Lawmakers "should be able to exercise their parliamentary mandate free of intimidation on them or their family members," Mogherini added.