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María Corina Machado: “The Chavistas don’t want me to run because they will lose to me”

María Corina Machado: “The Chavistas don’t want me to run because they will lose to me”

In the office of Maria Corina Machado There are many books. The office of the Venezuelan opposition’s presidential candidate, elected by acclamation in last October’s primaries, has a library, but a single title stands out on her desk: “From one day to the next, the measures in the first 24 change Hours really.” of the government”, Patricia Bullrich. The book comes from the former presidential candidate in Argentina and current security minister in the government of Argentina Javier Mileiand tried to answer how she would face a possible first day as president of this nation if she had been elected in the presidential election.

Machado says he is building “among us all” the country of the future, the way to govern Venezuela when Chavismo finally gives up the power it has held for a quarter of a century. She is aiming to face the Venezuelan president in the elections, like more than two million people who voted for her in internal elections in October. Nicolas Maduro. But Chavismo considers them disqualified, now with a Supreme Court ruling that, according to the opposition Unitary Platform, the United States, Canada and other nations have violated the law Barbados Agreement. This pact, signed in October 2023, provides the framework for respectable and free elections in Venezuela.

María Corina Machado also provides this interview to LA RAZÓN, a few hours after the European Parliament (EP) adopted a resolution 446 yes votes and 21 no votes Warning that they will not recognize the results of a non-free election, including Corina Machado as a competitor. Something that Chavismo called “gross interference.” Corina Machado boasts that a new interest in what is happening in Venezuela has been sparked, as demonstrated in the EP. “They haven’t addressed the issue (the political conflict) for two and a half years.”.

Chavismo insists his disqualification is final. Do you think you can run in the elections scheduled for the second half of the year?

The regime refuses to admit that we have already inflicted political and spiritual defeat on it. This is irreversible. They know we beat them 80-20, even without a flawless electoral system. More and more people within the regime are beginning to consider that a negotiated settlement might be in their best interests to advance a complex transition.

Can this defeat be inevitable and still without María Corina on the ballot?

They don’t want me to run because they know they’ll lose to me, and they’ll run against anyone they think they’ll lose to. We must understand that it is not about one person, but that Venezuelans have the right to choose what they want, and not just Maduro, because that would be a simulation of an election.

Is there the only way to defeat Maduro if you are the candidate?

I believe Maduro will lose because I am the candidate.

The United States has set a deadline of April to reactivate sanctions for non-compliance with this agreement.

Do you think there will be sanctions again?

We know that two months is a very long time in Venezuela. A lot happens inside and outside. My biggest obsession is to build more and more civic strength. From here to there and at the crucial moment it will depend on what that balance of power is. The reality is that we are getting stronger every day and the regime is losing them.

Do you have a direct dialogue with the United States government?

I am in direct dialogue with many governments, including the United States.

And contacts with Donald Trump, who is expected to be the Republican nominee in November?

I have contacts all over the United States, through Congress and the government.

The USA is threatening sanctions. What can Europe do beyond the diplomatic level?

Events in Venezuela since the primaries have sparked new interest, showing that people are ready to change this now. That is why we see what is happening in the European Parliament, which two and a half years ago did not address the Venezuela issue with a resolution. Many heads of government there maintain relationships with those in Latin America who are in dialogue with Nicolás Maduro. There are many ways to send a clear message to the regime that it will not whitewash its face with an election that is neither clean nor free.

And in Latin America?

When I speak to the region, it is because the center where the main problems of Latin America converge is now in Venezuela. If Maduro takes this away “the hard way,” as he says, all of these problems will become even greater. There could be a wave of migration like we have never experienced before. But there is also the other scenario where we could move forward on a transition route, even if it is very complicated.

Colombia’s President Gustavo Petro was said to be a key player due to his history of disqualifications and his alleged influence over Maduro. Is there a dialogue with him?

Communication mechanisms exist with almost all Latin American governments. There is no country in the world more affected by the Venezuela conflict than Colombia. Many interests are displayed. I have no doubt that we will eventually reconcile them with an orderly transition.

Is there strong support from the opposition parties for your candidacy or are there doubts about disqualification?

We work very well with the vast majority. I see that the parties are very active at their bases, but also really active. We have integrated all the teams that come from civil society, as well as the parties that participated in the primaries and those that did not participate. I can’t do it alone.

There are sectors asking to come up with a Plan B, a replacement candidate who can keep up. Even within the unified platform. Do you agree?

I believe that we received the order for unity on October 22nd. And anyone who violates this mandate violates unity.

Have the campaign commands already been constituted?

There are states where the articulation was immediate, in others it cost a little more. But the parties are in action. They have a very well thought-out concept, it is efficient and very agile. There are some who are faster than others and that is normal. Let us remember that oppression and violence exist. Four people from our team have been kidnapped by the regime and we have no precise information about their whereabouts. It is a form of enforced disappearance that violates the Barbados Convention and all other human rights treaties.

What is missing from your campaign?

Money is needed. So far everything has been done with nails, everyone has put something into it. People come to us and say that they trust us and will lend us their house, their shopping cart and some food (for the events), but we need more help and that everyone can contribute a little.

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