OAS discusses Venezuela crisis, Caracas protests

The Organization of American States (OAS) held a special meeting on the crisis in Venezuela on Tuesday, triggering a furious reaction from the Venezuelan government and its staunchest regional allies.

The meeting is the international community's latest effort to get to grips with an economic and political unraveling in Venezuela, whose skid to the brink of collapse has the rest of Latin America increasingly worried.

In a sign that Venezuela is increasingly cornered, a total of 20 countries voted to open Tuesday's special session of the OAS Permanent Council in Washington, while eleven countries voted against, two abstained and one was absent.

The three-hour meeting ended with a declaration on behalf of the 20 nations pledging to take concrete steps toward a diplomatic solution, but provided few details on what that would involve.

Venezuela, joined by leftist governments of Nicaragua and Bolivia, protested that the organization was interfering in the country's internal affairs and stalled the proceedings with nearly an hour of legal objections.