Venezuelan Government and Opposition to Resume Mexico Talks?

A statement issued by the Venezuelan hard right opposition’s Unitary Platform (PU) expresses their willingness to return to the dialogue table that had been underway in Mexico City last year. The talks were being mediated by the Kingdom of Norway, with the accompaniment of the Russian Federation and the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Through the statement published on social media, the extreme right delegation of the Unitary Platform stressed that the agenda that had been discussed in the negotiations is more timely and urgent than ever.”

PU is thus trying to minimize the harm done to Venezuelan diplomat Alex Saab whose illegal extradition to the US—described as kidnapping by many legal experts—led to an abrupt and indefinite termination of the dialogue. The ambassador’s kidnapping has been denounced by President Nicolás Maduro as a blow by the White House against the negotiations.

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Saab, who had been held hostage in Cape Verde for over a year before being illegally taken to the US against his will, had been incorporated by the Venezuelan government as a full member of its dialogue delegation.

A Unitary Platform spokesperson criticized the Venezuelan government for “prioritizing the defense of a single individual” over and above the highest interests of the whole nation, thus criticizing the demonstration of solidarity and support from the Venezuelan State in favor of Alex Saab.

Pressure from Washington?
In addition, officials from the Joe Biden administration have urged the Venezuelan government to resume the negotiations in Mexico. The US government asserted that the dialogues should be restarted regardless of Ambassador Saab’s current imprisonment in a Florida jail.

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White House spokesperson, Ned Price, stated that “What is needed now is for the Maduro regime to return to the negotiating table, and added that, unlike the Venezuelan government, the Unitary Platform has repeatedly emphasized its commitment to participate in the dialogues. This is according to many the opposite of what has happened in reality.

Several media platforms have released statements attributed to the US “ambassador” to Guaidó, James Story, who reportedly claimed that Washington supports a return to dialogue in Mexico. However, Story is of the opinion that Alex Saab must remain in prison in the United States.

The Unitary Platform reiterated the points that it would push for in an eventual return to dialogue, which include a “comprehensive reform” of the Venezuelan justice system. The platform also mentioned that they would advocate for the release of “political prisoners,” who in reality are people who were associated in violent coup attempts over the last several years. It may also be mentioned here that irrespective of the demand of the extreme right, a judicial reform has already been initiated in Venezuela, with the National Assembly starting discussions in this regard towards the close of last year.

 

Featured image: Last year’s negotiations in Mexico City between the government and the extreme right oppostion of Venezuela. File photo

(RedRadioVE) by José Manuel Blanco Díaz, with Orinoco Tribune content

Translation: Orinoco Tribune

OT/GMS/SC

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José Manuel Blanco Diaz
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Vice President of the Radio Miraflores Foundation |radiomiraflores.net.ve | Presenter of | UCV Social Communication | UCV announcer

José Manuel Blanco Diaz

Vice President of the Radio Miraflores Foundation |radiomiraflores.net.ve | Presenter of | UCV Social Communication | UCV announcer