Divisions at OAS summit postpone diplomatic solution to Venezuela crisis

Members of Organization of American States will try again at June general assembly in Cancún

Expectations were not met on Wednesday at the meeting of the Organization of American States (OAS), where representatives had met to discuss a diplomatic way out to the serious economic and political crisis in Venezuela where rolling demonstrations have left dozens of opposition protesters dead in recent weeks.

The OAS meeting on Wednesday.
The OAS meeting on Wednesday.LENIN NOLLY (EFE)
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La falta de consenso entre cancilleres americanos aplaza una posible salida diplomática para Venezuela

After debating for over five hours in Washington DC, regional representatives were unable to reach consensus. Members will now attempt to hammer out a common text in preparation for the OAS general assembly scheduled for later this month in Cancún, Mexico.

“There is a will to reach a consensus that will seek a way out to the circumstances in Venezuela,” said Mexico’s foreign secretary, Luis Videgaray, at the end of the meeting. “We have agreed to agree,” he added.

But divisions among Caribbean member states, which remain loyal to Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro, prevented a solution from being reached on Wednesday.

We have agreed to agree

Mexican Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray

The deadline for an agreement is the general assembly of June 19-21. Videgaray said that if a resolution does not emerge from that gathering, “it would be deplorable, and a lost opportunity.”

A day earlier, the Mexican foreign secretary had stated that Venezuela “has ceased being a democracy.”

On Wednesday, Videgaray again underscored the constitutional violations, as well as the economic and humanitarian crisis that the country is experiencing under Maduro. His condemnation was backed by over a dozen members.

The number two official at the US State Department, Tom Shannon, listed some of Maduro’s authoritarian actions and concluded that there is “a disruption of the democratic order in Venezuela.”

English version by Susana Urra.


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