Venezuela's Maduro says negotiations will start with objection

Elias Hubbard
July 12, 2019

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro has expressed optimism about renewed negotiations between his government and the Venezuelan opposition in Barbados.

The political deadlock between the two sides reached a critical point in January, after Guaido declared himself "interim president" of Venezuela and was immediately recognized by the United States.

"I am very optimistic".

"Today they had a five-hour session, and I think that step by step, with strategic patience, we can find a path to peace".

Mr Maduro has reached out to the opposition during the crisis as he insists his government seeks peace in the country.

Norway which hosted the preliminary talks and is mediating the protracted process says the aim of the upcoming next round of discussions in Barbados, is to move further forward towards a constitutional settlement.

The suspicious death of retired naval officer Rafael Acosta Arevalo sparked global condemnation.

Guaido changed his tune from his comments last week when he said there is "never" a good time to talk to the "dictatorship".

He also called for Venezuela's reincorporation into the Rio Treaty, which could be used to legally justify United States intervention in the nation.

"A violent solution. could generate loss of governance even for a new government", he told AFP.

On Sunday Guaido also announced that he would push for Caracas to rejoin the Inter-American Defense Treaty, which Venezuela left in 2012.

Afterwards, Iglesias met with Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez.

Venezuela's government said Guaido's statement "is not in keeping with the guidelines presented by those sponsoring the dialogue", namely Norway and host Barbados.

"Iglesias has confirmed his commitment to the dialog process", Rodriguez tweeted. The talks come amid a profound economic and humanitarian crisis in the country, where hardship has made life untenable for many Venezuelans with basic needs, such as food and medicine, hard to come by.

Guaido has called Maduro a "usurper" for staying in power after a 2018 election widely dismissed as a sham.

Norway has joined in the efforts for a peaceful resolution to the crisis that has resulted in thousands of Venezuelans fleeing their homeland in the last few months.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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