GUATEMALA -Guatemala’s newly sworn-in president Alejandro Giammattei on Thursday announced the breakoff of diplomatic ties with Venezuela and the closure of its embassy in Caracas.

Giammattei confirmed the decision to the press following a meeting with the secretary general of the Washington-based Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro.

“We have instructed the foreign affairs minister (Pedro Brolo) that the only person remaining at the Venezuelan embassy proceed to return and we can definitively conclude ties with the government of (Venezuela’s President Nicolas) Maduro. We are going to close the embassy,” said Giammattei.

Giammattei, who was sworn in on Tuesday, met Almagro to discuss Guatemala’s participation in the Lima Group of Latin American countries and the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance, also known as the Rio Pact.