Venezuela’s government and opposition will again sit down to negotiate this Friday in Mexico City with the intention of unlocking years of confrontation. The opposition camp, still atomized, seeks to guarantee “conditions” to participate in “free, fair and transparent” elections, free political prisoners and allow humanitarian aid to enter the country. The sector led by bi-candidate presidential Henrique Capriles confirmed its participation in the process in which the opposition led by Juan Guaidó will also be present., which appears to lose face due to its refusal to participate in the November 21 regional elections. In turn, Nicolás Maduro’s government, which arrives at the dialogue with better prospects, will demand that, in addition to the lifting of sanctions, the “recognition of the legitimate authorities of Venezuela”, the “renunciation of violence” and “that all oppositions are incorporated “.
The Friday meeting precedes the working week that will start on August 30th and is considered to be the formal start of negotiations under the mediation, once again, of Norway. Mexico’s offer takes place in the middle of the growing role that President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has been playing in favor of Latin American unity. In 2019, the AMLO government was one of the few in the region that did not recognize the “self-proclaimed presidency” of Guaidó and led, together with Uruguay, a proposal for rapprochement between Maduro and the opposition. “The government of Mexico has always promoted dialogue among Venezuelans themselves as the only solution to the situation in Venezuela, without interference and favoring a humanitarian vision”, he argued on Wednesday Maximilian Reyes, Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs for Latin America.
The list of demands that each sector will sit on Mexican territory is very different. “We made a set of demands, demands and we keep them firmly: first, the immediate lifting of all criminal sanctions”the president said days ago Nicolas Mature referring to the battery of measures against the government and its key figures, including a US oil embargo. In June, The United States, Canada and the European Union were willing to “review” sanctions against Maduro if they see “significant progress” towards “credible, inclusive and transparent” elections..
The Venezuelan government also demands the recognition of institutions as the presidency, the National Assembly elected in 2020 and the Supreme Court of Justice. finally demands Venezuela’s “asset return” that some governments and global financial entities froze abroad Y that “all oppositions” participate in the dialogue.
for your part the Venezuelan opposition requires two main points. The first requirement is the debate on a calendar of “free and fair” elections. which include presidential and national parliamentarians. The second is the massive influx of humanitarian aid and coronavirus vaccines into the country.. There is a third, broader point that contemplates the need for “democratic guarantees”, a demand that includes the release of the 268 denounced political prisoners.
Maduro’s government will be represented in Mexico by Jorge Rodríguez, President of the National Assembly elected in 2020 and former mayor of Caracas. Héctor Rodríguez, governor of the central state of Miranda, former Minister of Sports and Youth under Maduro, 39, will also represent the interests of the ruling party.
The opposition delegation will be led by constitutional lawyer, former mayor and former deputy Gerardo Blyde. He will be joined in his efforts by political party leaders such as Luis Emilio Rondón Sr. of Un Nuevo Tiempo, Mariela Magallanes of La Causa R, and Tomás Guanipa, ambassador of Self-proclaimed government of Guaidó in Colombia who resigned his “position” to participate in the dialogue. Stalin Gonzalez, a former MP and opposition spokesman in the failed Barbados negotiation processes in 2019, will also participate.
Self-proclaimed President in 2019 after Maduro’s re-election the previous year, Guaidó lost control of the Legislative Assembly after the December 6 parliamentary elections in which Chavismo ravaged. The ultra-opposition leader clings to his legitimacy by sitting down to negotiate through his delegates, even though the government is clearly ahead. AND even from the fragmented arch of opposition, his figure seems to be overshadowed by Capriles’s.
“While this negotiation process is taking place, there is an election and the opposition will be stronger in the negotiation if the election goes well”said Capriles, who is committed to “discreet” dialogue away from television cameras. The official expressed support for the opposition’s participation in elections in which the next mayors, governors and local and regional deputies will be elected, despite the reluctance of the sector led by Guaidó. “I’m going to vote on November 21st, it’s a decision I have more than clear, but a single stick doesn’t make a mountain, I’m a single vote”, said Capriles, historically linked to the most radical sectors of the Venezuelan opposition.