US

Venezuela blasts OAS as diplomats try to defuse conflict

  • Supporters of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro shout slogans during a rally to show their support in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Government supporters and state employees marched in a rally against "foreign intervention" in Venezuela's affairs. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

    Supporters of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro shout slogans during a rally to show their support in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Government supporters and state employees marched in a rally against "foreign intervention" in Venezuela's affairs. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)  (The Associated Press)

  • A supporter of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro wears a sign that reads in Spanish "Venezuela is Latin American pride" and shouts slogans in support of Maduro at a rally in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Government supporters and state employees held a rally against "foreign intervention" in Venezuela's affairs. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

    A supporter of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro wears a sign that reads in Spanish "Venezuela is Latin American pride" and shouts slogans in support of Maduro at a rally in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Government supporters and state employees held a rally against "foreign intervention" in Venezuela's affairs. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)  (The Associated Press)

  • A supporter of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro wears a sign that reads in Spanish "Venezuela is Latin American pride" and shouts slogans in support of Maduro at a rally in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Government supporters and state employees held a rally against "foreign intervention" in Venezuela's affairs. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

    A supporter of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro wears a sign that reads in Spanish "Venezuela is Latin American pride" and shouts slogans in support of Maduro at a rally in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Government supporters and state employees held a rally against "foreign intervention" in Venezuela's affairs. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)  (The Associated Press)

Thousands of Venezuelans rallied in support of President Nicolas Maduro as regional governments seemed to back away from a threat to punish his administration for violating its commitment to democracy.

The head of the Organization of American States called on Tuesday for a special meeting to evaluate Maduro's jailing of critics and attempts to block the opposition-controlled congress from legislating.

On Wednesday, representatives of OAS nations met seeking to defuse the clash without taking up Secretary General Luis Almagro's proposal, which could lead to Venezuela's suspension from the Washington-based group.

Maduro has responded by threatening to go after Venezuelan congressional leaders on charges of treason. He told supporters Wednesday that the OAS is participating in an imperialist plot to steal Venezuela's oil and called Almagro a piece of trash.