"I couldn't be more proud of the way President Trump directed our administration to be the first nation on Earth to recognize Juan Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela".
In an interview on ABC News' "This Week", Pompeo said Maduro's regime is being propped up by Cuba, and that "without the Cubans, there'd be no possibility he was still in power". Earlier this week, Guaidó unsuccessfully called on the country's military to revolt against Maduro, however, anti-Maduro protests have continued.
President Donald Trump meanwhile adopted a strikingly conciliatory tone on Friday after a lengthy conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the Venezuela crisis.
Karl pointed out that Pompeo himself said that Russian Federation convinced Maduro to stay in power when he was considering fleeing Venezuela: "Does the president not realize what you have said publicly?"
Instead of unilateral US intervention, Guaido said such an operation would have to be accompanied by Venezuelan forces, without offering further details.
It comes as pressure is mounting on Maduro to step down, following elections in January in which voters chose opposition leader Juan Guaido over him for president.
"A lot of people have had faith in the political process, which hasn't brought results, or at least the results that we want", he said.
Trump on Friday said Russian President Vladimir Putin assured him he isn't seeking to "get involved" in the crisis, although Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton both said earlier in the week that the Kremlin talked Maduro out of leaving Venezuela after US -backed Guaido attempted to end his regime by calling for a military uprising.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro urged the army on Saturday to prepare for the possibility of U.S. military action.
When asked if President Trump believes he can intervene without congressional authorization, Pompeo responded by saying he was "very confident any action we took in Venezuela would be lawful".
In Moscow, Lavrov met with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza and pushed back against Washington.