WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department says Switzerland has agreed to represent America's interests in Venezuela following the Trump administration's decision to withdraw its staff from the U.S. Embassy in Caracas.

It says Switzerland will be what's known as the "protecting power" for the United States until the U.S. Embassy resumes operations. The U.S. temporarily shuttered its embassy after Washington recognized opposition leader chief Juan Guaido (gwy-DOH') as Venezuela's legitimate leader.

Switzerland also represents U.S. interests in Iran, where it provides consular services to American citizens and serves as a liaison between Washington and Tehran.

However, the Swiss embassy in Caracas will not immediately be able to offer emergency services to Americans. The State Department says Americans in Venezuela should go to U.S. embassies or consulates in other countries for assistance.