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[Published: Wednesday December 27 2017]

Venezuela: an epicenter of conflictual alliances?

By Sarah Diab

LONDON - Venezuela has been the subject of international controversy after its ongoing diplomatic issues with Brazil and Canada among others making the country sensible to a wide variation of critiques.

Following the recent expulsion of Ruy Perreira, Brazil’s chief diplomat in Venezuela; the Brazillian authorities have retaliated by executing what seems to be a tit for tat move by declaring Gerardo Maldonado, Venezuela’s most senior diplomat in Brazilia, Persona non Grata. As a result, the foreign Ministry of Brazil stated in a press release that the country “will take corresponding reciprocity measures.”

Indeed, disputes between the two Latin American countries have been exacerbated since the impeachment of the then President of the Portuguese speaking country Dilma Rousseff in 2016. After being charged with allegations of financial misconduct, the former Brazilian president was replaced by the center rightist government led by Michel Temer. The situation was described by the current President of Venezuela Nicolas Maduro as a “right wing coup”. In the meantime, the contrast on party wing levels is not helping the ongoing clash of both countries.

Relations between the South American giants have consequently deteriorated and diplomatic peace seems to be far from achievable in the near future which was made clear by the head of the Constituent Assembly in Venezuela, Delcy Rodriguez who stated that “diplomatic relations with Brazil will not be restored until the government reinstates the constitutional order it has effectively broken.”

Meanwhile, Brazil is not the only subject to conflictual alliances with Venezuela. Indeed, Canadian charge d’affaires Craib Kowalik found himself in the same situation as Perreira. Notwithstanding, the decision was backed by Delcy Rodriguez who described his behavior as “permanent and insistent” and it was characterized by “rude and vulgar interference in the internal affairs of Venezuela”.

 But some could just see it as a retaliation following the earlier imposed sanctions by Canada on Venezuelan administrators who they accused of violating human rights and showcasing acts of corruption. Consequently, Canada has presented the Venezuelans’ actions as a way to intimidate and a calming move to ease off pressure, they have said they will not respond.

Like his predecessor Hugo Chavez, Maduro have recently been the object of constant criticism---The European Union and multiple Latin American nations have been critical of his constituent assembly and have decided not to recognize it. Donald Trumps’ administration has labelled him as a dictator and his opposition has accused him and his socialist party of ruining the country as well as the economy.

Indeed, after assuming office in 2013, the President of Venezuela has attracted a globally negative response from his people. According to an unofficial referendum organised by his political opposition, shortly after a Boycott against the Constituent Assembly, around 7 million Venezuelans were against the new system and many riots and protests have taken place since Maduro’s arrival in power.

The most recent tensions between Venezuela and Brazil prove that an instant solution is far from possible for now. This is because the government of Caracas seems keen to pursue its political actions which will only result in retribution from its neighbours. Despite being the topic of much criticism, Nicolas Maduro will present himself and his government in 2019 to run for re-election after his 6-year term draws to a close. - (ANA) -


AB/ANA/ 27 December 2017 - - -



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