UN leader avoids choosing sides

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres delivers remarks to the press at the United Nations Headquarters on Dec. 6, 2017 in New York City. Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

NEW YORK – U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says he has been in contact with supporters of the rival initiatives to deal with the Venezuela crisis and has decided the United Nations won't be part of any of them.

He told reporters Monday that he took the decision "in order to give credibility to our continued offer of good offices to the parties to be able at their request to help find a political solution."

Guterres said he has been following the evolution of the situation in Venezuela with "a lot of concern."

The presidents of Mexico and Uruguay have offered to negotiate between socialist President Nicolas Maduro and opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has been recognized by many nations in Europe and the Americas as the country's legitimate leader. But Guaido rejected the offer.