On January 23, the leader of Venezuela's opposition Juan Guaido, whose appointment as parliamentary speaker had been annulled by the Supreme Court two days before that declared himself as acting president.
Venezuela's self-styled leader has called on the Bank of England to block the sale of £1billion in gold to the troubled South American country.
"There's a Cold War atmosphere", says Thomas Posado, an expert in foreign relations at the Paris VIII university in France, but "it's a lot less ideological".
"I've made a decision to break diplomatic and political relations with the imperialist USA government".
"With these measures, they intend to rob us", he said.
Mr Maduro, meanwhile, gathered with troops and, in a message directed at the USA, said he would not allow another Vietnam.
"I don't underestimate the threat of persecution at the moment", he added, "but here we are". "We need it urgently".
Colombia on Wednesday barred entry to more than 200 people linked to Maduro's regime. "We have a good system of defence in place and moreover, we have more significant protection - this is protection from God who will give me a long life", Maduro added.
Maduro reiterated that USA interests in Venezuela are limited exclusively to its vast natural riches.
"Join us!" the protesters cried out to a line of officers wearing helmets and carrying shields.
Despite alleging Trump wanted him dead, Maduro said he was ready to meet him "wherever he wants", but thought the prospect unlikely given what he described as attempts by Trump's advisers to prevent it.
Facing the biggest challenge of his six-year rule, the 56-year-old socialist leader also said his armed forces remained loyal and President Vladimir Putin was firmly behind him.
Under Venezuela's constitution, the head of the National Assembly is empowered to take on the duties of the chief executive under a range of circumstances in which the presidency is vacated.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro called on the people in the U.S. to deter the Trump administration from putting boots on the ground in Venezuela, warning that any intervention would backfire leading to new Vietnam-like disaster. Pence said they discussed recent sanctions actions, "highlighting that these deprive Maduro and his cronies access to corrupt income and. preserve the country's wealth for the people of Venezuela".
Maduro, who survived what he called an assassination attempt in August a year ago, said he was well protected, guaranteeing him a long life.
Thousands of Venezuelans hit the streets Wednesday afternoon, waving flags and shouting.
Two French journalists have been arrested in Venezuela, according to the French embassy in the country.
In the city of San Felix, residents set fire to a statue of Mr Maduro's mentor and predecessor, the late Hugo Chavez.
President Trump noting the unrest in Venezuela issued a warning on Twitter about traveling there.
But buoyed by unprecedented global criticism of Mr Maduro, anti-government forces have put aside their infighting and are projecting a united front.