25 February 2019
Commenting on the worsening crisis in Venezuela, the co-chairs of the European Green Party Reinhard Bütikofer and Monica Frassoni said:
"Venezuela’s dictator Maduro is cynically preventing the delivery of relief supplies to his suffering people through the force of arms. His opponent Juan Guaidó, who has been recognised by the European Parliament as the transitional president, has responded to this by appealing to the international community to keep all options open to achieve "the liberation of the homeland". This situation presents serious risks. The opposition’s expectation that essential parts of the police and the military could break allegiance with Maduro has so far failed. But it is certainly not in the interests of the Venezuelan opposition to see a US military intervention. If a war does break out, it is the people who are set to suffer the most.
“The EU must now become more actively involved in developing a non-military plan B. The political, economic and diplomatic pressure on Maduro must be intensified on one hand. In order to do that, the EU must enter talks with other political actors such as Russia and China that have supported Maduro until now. Secondly, President Guaidó should be persuaded to lay the responsibility for the relief supplies into the hands of established and politically neutral aid organisations. The Catholic Church should especially be involved in this instance. It would, as a result, make it more problematic for Maduro to block the supplies and help President Guaidó underpin his claim to the leadership if he initiated such a solution. Maduro’s henchmen must of course be prevented from using the supplies for their own political advantage. Time is now running out for the EU to prevent a worsening of the situation in Venezuela and we urge Mogherini to take bold action now.”
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