Once again the $3.2 billion of Venezuelan funds illegally frozen abroad and discussed in the Mexico Talks’ Second Agreement for the Social Protection of the People are in the news, with Spanish newspaper El País claiming that the funds will finally be released in the coming weeks.
According to sources consulted by El País, the $3.2 billion that were agreed to be unfreezed in November 2022 by the US government and the Venezuelan far-right opposition under its tutelage, as part of an agreement with the United Nations to finance education, electricity, and healthcare projects in Venezuela, will finally be release in a few weeks.
This is not the first time that mainstream media has hyped up this kind of news that turned out to be false. After almost a year since the second agreement of the Mexico Talks, the Venezuelan people have not seen a single dollar of that money that legally belongs to the Venezuelan people. This is the main reason due to which the Venezuelan government has not resumed the Mexico Talks, stating that it does not see the point of negotiating with people who do not respect the agreements reached.
However, the sources that El País consulted indicated that it was the UN for which the release was delayed. “[UN Secretary General Antonio] Guterres is ready. It is time for the release of that money,” the sources allegedly told El País.
The report further claimed that the release of these funds would serve to resume the dialogue between the Venezuelan government and the opposition in Mexico. However, on several occasions, Venezuelan authorities have stated that for the resumption of the talks, the lifting of all sanctions and the release of Venezuelan diplomat Alex Saab, imprisoned in the US, are also necessary.
In this regard, Colombian President Gustavo Petro asked the United States to unblock Venezuela’s Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), so that they could be processed through the Andean Development Corporation (CAF) and be invested in social welfare programs in Venezuela.
“I propose to the UN and the US to unblock the SDRs, the Special Drawing Rights, of Venezuela in the IMF, which are Venezuela’s property, and to turn them over to Venezuela through the Andean Development Corporation, CAF,” the Colombian president wrote in a social media post.
Excelente el paso que da la ONU y los EEUU para desbloquear fondos venezolanos que se inviertan en función social.
Propongo a Venezuela y EEUU desbloquear los DEGS, Derechos especiales de giro, de Venezuela en el FMI, que son de su propiedad y tramitarlos a través de la…
— Gustavo Petro (@petrogustavo) September 8, 2023
He also reiterated his call to lift all sanctions on Venezuela in order to reduce migration through the Darién forest to the United States.
In May it came to light that the White House had told the UN that it would allow the unfreezing of Venezuelan funds and their investment in Venezuela “without fear that it would be vulnerable to lenders.” However, last year the Biden administration had claimed that it could not guarantee if the funds would be safe from creditors.
The US statement does not make sense for many analysts, as the US is the source of sanctions against Venezuela, which makes it impossible for Venezuelan authorities to deal with its foreign debt and international financial commitments. It is the US that is not allowing Venezuela to comply with its financial obligations not only through the sanctions but also by not recognizing the constitutional government of President Nicolás Maduro, and is still carrying on its failed regime change operation in Venezuela.
(RedRadioVE) by Ana Perdigón, with Orinoco Tribune content
Translation: Orinoco Tribune
Ana Perdigón#molongui-disabled-linkSeptember 19, 2023