JUly  2019



JULY 31, 2019


         CARACAS, VENEZUELA    --  Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro on Sunday said two former FARC commanders from neighboring Colombia whose whereabouts are unknown were “welcome in Venezuela,” a statement likely to fuel criticism that he is providing a safe haven for armed groups. Speaking alongside Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel at the closing ceremony of the Sao Paulo Forum, a gathering of regional leftist politicians and activists, Maduro called Ivan Marquez and Jesus Santrich “leaders of peace.” Santrich and Marquez - the war aliases used by Seuxis Paucias Hernandez and Luciano Marin, respectively - both joined the FARC’s political party after the leftist rebel group demobilized under a 2016 peace deal that ended decades of civil war.

     But Marquez went missing last year after his nephew was arrested and taken to the United States to cooperate with drug-trafficking investigators. And earlier this month, Colombia’s Supreme Court ordered Santrich’s arrest after he failed to appear for questioning about U.S. drug-trafficking charges. Colombian President Ivan Duque later suggested Santrich may have fled to Venezuela. Maduro said he had learned of Santrich’s possible presence in Venezuela from Duque’s statement. “They had announced that Ivan Marquez and Jesus Santrich were coming, and I was left waiting,” Maduro said. “Ivan Marquez and Jesus Santrich are welcome in Venezuela and at the Sao Paulo Forum, the two of them are leaders of peace.”

     Colombian authorities believe dissident FARC rebels and fighters for leftist rebel National Liberation Army (ELN) are hiding in Venezuela and receiving protection from Maduro, according to a military intelligence report seen by Reuters. Maduro’s government has denied protecting Colombian rebels. Tensions between the neighboring countries have worsened since Duque joined the United States and most Latin American countries in recognizing Juan Guaido, president of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, as the rightful leader, arguing Maduro’s 2018 re-election was illegitimate. Maduro also said that two other FARC leaders, Timochenko and Pablo Catatumbo, were welcome in Venezuela.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.  -- The former president of Uruguay, socialist José (Pepe) Mujica, has recently said that the government of Venezuela led by Nicolás Maduro is "a dictatorship." Senior officials of the Broad Front of Uruguay have been unmarked in the last days of the official position of the government of that country regarding the crisis in Venezuela, claiming that the government in dispute that presides over Nicolás Maduro is "a dictatorship."  The current government of Uruguay, led by Tabaré Vázquez, has been active in the International Contact Group, a diplomatic initiative that includes Europe that seeks a "peaceful, democratic and consensual" way out in Venezuela. His critics allege that he has not maintained a more severe stance with Maduro and that neutrality is not possible in the case of Venezuela.

      In an interview with Radio Universal, former President José (Pepe) Mujica said that "it is a dictatorship, yes. And in the situation that is there is nothing other than dictatorship." Mujica made the comments on leaving a meeting with militants of the Popular Participation Movement (MPP). And he said: "But there is a dictatorship in Saudi Arabia, with an absolute king. There is a dictatorship in Malaysia, they kill 25 types a day. And the People's Republic of China, what do they tell me?" Another to comment on Venezuela was Daniel Martínez, an official candidate for the elections on October 27, who until Sunday, when asked about the issue, avoided defining the government in Maduro's dispute. "For the left, the issue of human rights must always be an ethical imperative," Martínez said in his Twitter account.

    Yes, Danilo, for the left, the issue of human rights must always be an ethical imperative.
The Bachelet report is lapidary regarding Venezuela and it is a dictatorship. We must continue working on a negotiated exit and that the center be Venezuelans. "The report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet is lapidary regarding Venezuela and it is a dictatorship. We must continue working on a negotiated exit and that the center be Venezuelans," he added. Bachelet visited Venezuela and in early July issued a report in which he urged Maduro to "immediately take specific measures to stop and remedy serious rights violations." The current Minister of Economy of Uruguay, Danilo Astori, also unmarked himself from the current government's position on a radio program locally recently. "It costs me nothing: Venezuela is a dictatorship, and it is a tremendous dictatorship, with very serious humanitarian impacts," he said.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.  -A court in the United States ruled in favor of a request by Canadian miner Crystallex to advance a dispute against Venezuela, seeking to receive compensation for an expropriation of 2008.  A federal court of appeals of the United States on Monday rejected an appeal by the Venezuelan oil company to cancel an order that allows the Canadian mining company Crystallex to collect compensation from the state firm with a compensation of some 1.4 billion dollars owed by the South American nation .

     The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia said that a lower court acted at its discretion by joining the actions of Petróleos de Venezuela to its US unit, which owns Citgo Petroleum Corp. Crystallex won the ruling as compensation for the expropriation of his assets in Venezuela in 2008 under the government of then President Hugo Chavez, who died of cancer in 2013.

     "The District Court acted within its jurisdiction when it issued a writ of embargo on PDVSA's actions of PDVH to satisfy Crystallex's trial" against Venezuela and "PDVH's actions are not immune to the embargo," Judge Leonard Stark wrote , referring to the US unit of PDVSA. It was not immediately clear if PDVSA will ask the court to reconsider the decision or to appeal to the United States Supreme Court. Neither PDVSA nor the Venezuelan Ministry of Petroleum responded immediately to requests for comment.

JULY 30, 2019


         CARACAS, VENEZUELA    --    Venezuela’s embattled DICTATOR Nicolas Maduro warned on Saturday that his regime would interpret the triggering of a 1947 mutual defense pact between many nations in the Americas as a hostile act. Maduro was referring to the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR in its Spanish acronym), popularly known as the Rio Treaty – whose core principle is the so-called “hemispheric defense” doctrine establishing an attack against any of its signatories as an attack against all – from which Venezuela withdrew in 2013 but the opposition-controlled National Assembly recently voted to re-join.

     “Any attempt to implement the TIAR within Venezuela must be considered, in accordance with the Constitution, as a hostile act against our national sovereignty and an aggression on the territory, people, peace and international law,” Maduro said during an event at the country’s biggest army barracks. On Tuesday, a majority of lawmakers in the National Assembly approved Venezuela’s reincorporation to the pact in a special street session held at a square in east Caracas. The speaker of the legislative body, Juan Guaido – who is recognized as Venezuela’s interim president by more than 50 countries –, rushed the bill through the assembly without allowing amendments. “It’s not magic,” he told thousands of opposition supporters gathered at the Alfredo Sadel Square.

     The Rio Treaty contemplates the possibility of military cooperation and Maduro’s backers have expressed their fear that it could be used as a conduit for foreign troops to invade the country. Maduro himself described the parliament’s decision as “an act of clownery” and accused the opposition of engaging in “extremist politics for minorities.” He added that the intelligence agency SEBIN was ready to detain “the criminals who want Venezuela to be invaded.” The Rio Treaty was denounced in 2012 by the left-wing governments of Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela in 2012, who questioned why it had not been invoked during the 1982 Falklands War between Argentina and the United Kingdom.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.  -- Islamic and Latin American terrorist groups have made Venezuela their refuge and paradise under the protective wing of the Nicolás Maduro regime, as reported by ABC Iván Simonovis, the Commissioner for Security and Defense of the interim Presidency of Juan Guaidó. Maduro resorts to any threat to hold on to power and even to compare the country with a second Syria when he exclaims: "If you try to get me out, I will make Venezuela the Syria of South America," after entrusting Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza to visit Bachar Al Sadad in Damascus.

     Due to this eventual danger, Commissioner Simonovis warns of the increasingly active presence of terrorist groups. The commissioner also dispatches from the same Venezuelan Embassy in Washington and on weekends from Miami where he attends ABC by phone. His life has changed since he decided to escape from house prison on May 16, after spending almost 15 years behind bars, being the oldest political prisoner of the Chavez regime of Nicolás Maduro because Hugo Chavez sentenced him to 30 years for being allegedly involved in the attempted coup of 2002. This 60-year-old police from Caracas was acquitted of charges by the same magistrate Eladio Aponte who had sentenced him to the maximum penalty on Chávez's orders. Guaidó, on the other hand, signed the pardon and Simonovis managed to escape from his house jail by lowering four floors in abseil from the terrace of his residence.

      This week the National Assembly sanctioned the Law of Reincorporation of Venezuela to the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR) that allows foreign military intervention. «It is very important because the TIAR is a credible threat to Maduro. Now he is serious and should force the regime to change its violent and repressive attitude against the 27 million Venezuelans left in the country. Three people die every hour from criminal violence, ”he says. The first thing Simonovis recommends is to start applying the TIAR with humanitarian aid. "It's about creating a coalition of several countries to protect the entry of humanitarian aid for medicines and food," he advises.


   LIMA, PERU  -- The Lima Group regional bloc on Friday accused the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro of protecting “terrorist groups” in Colombia keeping up pressure days after an attempted military uprising failed to dislodge Maduro from power. The bloc, a dozen countries in the Americas that meet regularly to discuss Venezuela, did not provide details on the groups in Colombia that it alleged Maduro was protecting. But it said in its joint statement that it rejected any attempt to assassinate Colombian President Ivan Duque or undermine regional security.

      Duque said on Twitter on April 27 that explosives set off at a military base had been orchestrated from Venezuela, where he alleged Maduro was protecting Colombian ELN rebels. The Lima Group, which includes Canada, Brazil, Argentina and Chile, reiterated on Friday that it opposes military intervention to remove Maduro from power, and encouraged Venezuelans to continue efforts to keep fighting for democracy. “This process must be done peacefully and respecting the constitutional order in Venezuela,” Peruvian Foreign Minister Nestor Popolizio told journalists after meeting with his counterparts in a Lima Group meeting in Peru.

     The Lima Group backed Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido’s push to oust Maduro on Tuesday, which failed to trigger the military defections needed to wrest control of key institutions. The Lima Group said it wants Maduro’s ally Cuba to join efforts to end the political crisis in Venezuela, and called for an urgent meeting with the EU-backed International Contact Group, which has placed more emphasis on dialogue to find a solution.

JULY 29, 2019


         CARACAS, VENEZUELA    --    Great uncertainty generates in the Venezuelan population the process of dialogue that takes place in Barbados between the government and the opposition, with the mediation of the Norwegian government, given the great secrecy that both parties maintain in faithful compliance with the rules established at the meeting. As will be remembered in the middle of July, the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ine Eriksen Søreide, recommended that the spokesmen of the government and the opposition be respectful of the confidentiality of the process and try to maintain a constructive environment to achieve Let progress be made.

     Within the National Assembly there are mixed opinions about the scope of the talks, on the one hand there are those who hope that the electoral exit will be achieved in Barbados, while others believe that only more time is being given to the Government from Nicolás Maduro. The deputy for the Cause R, Daniel Antequera (Unity-Lara), trusts that the pressure strategy maintained by the president of the National Assembly Juan Guaidó will allow to reach the definitive agreement to solve the crisis facing Venezuela. "The goal of achieving a political solution to the crisis facing the whole country is maintained, hopefully the roads to a democratic exit can be established," he said.

    In Antequera's opinion, the electoral exit would be a way, but a new electoral body is required, since the CNE does not generate confidence for the changes that the citizen is demanding. "The country demands an urgent exit, and the people cannot wait any longer," he said. For his part, the deputy Fernando Orozco, dissident of the PSUV, personally , expressed distrust in the dialogue process that is established for the sixth time with the government of Nicolás Maduro. "I do not believe in a process of dialogue with the government, what is being given time and the plight of the population is exacerbated," he said. He considers it necessary for the population to look for other alternatives to the dialogue for an immediate solution, "he concluded.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.  -- The United States and its Latin American allies are concerned about the situation in Venezuela and its impact on the security of the region and that is why they carry out “totally professional” surveillance flights to better understand what is happening in the South American nation, said the Chief of Command South on Saturday, almost a week after denouncing that a Russian-made Venezuelan aircraft insecurely intercepted one such reconnaissance aircraft. "We are focusing on what is happening and trying to understand what is happening in order to help bring peace to the people of Venezuela," Navy Admiral Craig Faller, head of the U.S. Southern Command, told The Associated Press. With regard to reconnaissance flights, he added that “we have been totally professional, a marked difference with the actions of the Maduro regime”.

      Faller offered his statements in a brief interview with the PA at the port of this neighboring city of Miami, where the US Navy introduced a new warship. His comments took place after the Southern Command revealed last week that an EP-3 reconnaissance military aircraft was intercepted “unprofessionally” by a Sukhoi Su-30 fighter bomber from the Venezuelan Air Force at an unsafe distance, a maneuver which put the life of the crew and the mission of the aircraft at risk. The questions about flights take place at a time when both countries maintain tense relations. The United States leads a group of more than 50 countries that recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó as interim president of Venezuela.

     Faller argued that the US military works closely with strong allies such as Colombia and Brazil, to share intelligence, conduct exercises and joint training. Reserved when offering details or explanations, the military added that it is up to the government of President Donald Trump, and not him, to decide the policy towards Venezuela, but stressed that the influence Russia and Cuba are exerting on Maduro is “unfortunate” . "We see these invaders, Cuba and Russia, supporting Maduro and it is a very difficult situation for security, for the people," said Faller, the military chief in charge of Latin America and the Caribbean. After a presentation ceremony of the warship Paul Ignatius of the US Navy, he explained that everything the United States does sends a clear message to the world and Latin America. He said that with the new boat, that message is that peace is looking at everything. But it is also a message that "if we have to fight, we are ready to fight, and we are ready to win," Faller said.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA  -- Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Thursday called on Colombia’s military to “disobey orders to disrupt Venezuela’s peace,” in the latest sign of deteriorating relations between the neighboring South American countries. Maduro frequently calls Colombian President Ivan Duque a lackey for the United States and accuses him of conspiring to overthrow him. Duque says Maduro provides a safe haven to leftist Colombian rebel groups and has accused him of providing arms to the leadership of the National Liberation Army (ELN). “To the armed forces of Colombia, let us unite in one sole military force in the spirit of the great fatherland to unite our peoples in peace, to reject gringo military bases in Colombia, to reject plans for military aggression against Venezuela,” Maduro said in a state television broadcast.

“To the armed forces of Colombia, who receive daily orders to conspire against Venezuela’s peace: Disobey orders to disrupt Venezuela’s peace,” he added. Maduro, a socialist, broke off diplomatic relations with Bogota in February, after a failed U.S.-backed effort to transport humanitarian aid into Venezuela from the Colombian border. The aid had been requested by Juan Guaido, the head of the opposition-controlled National Assembly who in January invoked the constitution to assume a rival presidency, arguing Maduro’s 2018 re-election was illegitimate. He has been recognized as the rightful leader by most Western countries, including the United States and Colombia.

     In recent years, both countries have accused the other’s armed forces of cross-border incursions. Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino called on Colombian troops last month not to back Duque’s “interventionism” after Duque said Venezuelan troops’ support for Guaido could fracture the armed forces. Colombia is hosting more than 1 million Venezuelan migrants who have fled their country’s humanitarian crisis, according to the United Nations. The aid had been requested by Juan Guaido, the head of the opposition-controlled National Assembly who in January invoked the constitution to assume a rival presidency, arguing Maduro’s 2018 re-election was illegitimate. He has been recognized as the rightful leader by most Western countries, including the United States and Colombia.

    Caracas broke diplomatic relations with Bogotá in February, after a failed attempt to enter humanitarian aid from the Colombian border, requested by the opposition leader, Juan Guaidó. Duque described the blockade as a crime against humanity by the Venezuelan president. Guaidó, head of the National Assembly controlled by the opposition, who proclaimed himself as president in charge after considering the re-election of Maduro fraudulent, is recognized by more than 50 countries, including the United States and Colombia. In June, Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino urged the Colombian military not to be partakers of the "gross interference" he accused Duque.

JULY 26, 2019


          WASHINGTON, D.C.     --    The U.S. on Thursday imposed sanctions on three stepsons of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, accusing them of forming part of a sophisticated scheme that stole hundreds of millions in dollars from food import contracts at a time of widespread hunger in the crisis-wracked South American nation. The network allegedly was run by Alex Saab, an obscure Colombian businessman who came onto the radar of U.S. authorities a few years ago after amassing a large number of contracts with Maduro’s socialist government.

     The U.S. Treasury Department alleges that Saab utilized a network of shell companies spanning the globe — the UAE, Turkey, Hong Kong, Panama, Colombia and Mexico — to hide huge profits from no-bid, overvalued contracts obtained through bribes and kickbacks. “Saab engaged with Maduro insiders to run a wide-scale corruption network they callously used to exploit Venezuela’s starving population,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. “They use food as a form of social control, to reward political supporters and punish opponents, all the while pocketing hundreds of millions of dollars through a number of fraudulent schemes.”

Some of Saab’s contracts were allegedly obtained by paying bribes to Yoswal, Yosser and Walter Flores, the children of first lady Cilia Flores from a previous relationship. The three men, commonly known as Los Chamos — Venezuelan slang for “the kids” — are also under investigation by prosecutors in Miami for allegedly forming part of an scheme to siphon $1.2 billion from Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, two people familiar with the U.S. investigation told The Associated Press. Meanwhile, Interim President Juan Guaido and the National Assembly are leading efforts that respond directly to the peoples’ needs. Since January 23, organizations and volunteers have responded to Guaido’s call through weekend health fairs and humanitarian camps that have delivered urgent medical and hygiene care to over 130,000 Venezuelans in all 24 state


   WASHINGTON, D.C.  --   Major European allies are undermining negotiations to expel Nicolás Maduro from Venezuela, due to his hesitation to impose sanctions on the regime, according to a senior US official. "Many of the Europeans are making a real mistake here, because many of them adopt the position, while these negotiations continue, we should not impose sanctions," said Elliott Abrams, special representative of the State Department for the Venezuelan crisis, on Wednesday. "And this is exactly wrong, because while they are ongoing, if you want them to succeed, you need to increase the pressure on the regime to compromise."

     Maduro's envoys have met in Barbados with representatives of top opposition legislator Juan Guaidó, whom President Trump and other Western powers recognized as legitimate interim president in January. The United States is not a direct player of the talks, which have been mediated by Norway, but the government has been trying to encourage international pressure against the regime while offering amnesty if Maduro moves away peacefully. "The United States is not in this for some kind of revenge," Abrams said during a discussion at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, a group of Washington-based experts who have close ties to the administration. "We are trying to help Venezuelans regain their democracy."

      Guaido’s team is using the Barbados talks to pressure Maduro to step aside and allow free elections to form a new government, the lawmaker’s representative in Washington confirmed, while supporting Abrams’s criticism of the allies. Europeans "We need to increase the pressure of European countries," said Ambassador Carlos Vecchio in the forum. "In a way, they have been avoiding US sanctions that use Europe and we need to close that door." Maduro was also weakened by a report by the top human rights defender of the United Nations, Michelle Bachelet, who confirmed that the regime “recorded 5,287 murders, allegedly, for resistance to authority in 2018.That report "had a real impact on Western Europe," according to Abrams, who believes that his efforts to convince countries like Italy, to support new sanctions, will soon bear fruit.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.   -- The Russian vice-chancellor also attacked the United States for the sanctions it has imposed against Nicolás Maduro’s dictatorship (Twitter). Once again, Russia has challenged the United States over the issue of Venezuela. The Sergey Ryabkov, Russian deputy minister of external relations, states that president Vladimir Putin is willing to send more troops to the South American country to support the regime of Nicolas Maduro. According to Tass, the Russian state-run news agency, Ryabkov reaffirmed in a meeting with Maduro that the troops previously sent to Venezuela have fulfilled their task. Moscow is ready to launch recurrent missions.

      Referring to the Russian troops deployed to Venezuela, Ryabkov said that “the tasks confronting the groups that have been working here have been accomplished.” He added that “if the situation requires additional effort or adjustments, it will be provided.” Extending his support and defense to Maduro, the Russian vice-chancellor also attacked the United States for the sanctions it has imposed against the Chavista dictatorship.The U.S. Southern Command reported that a Venezuelan Air Force plane put the U.S. EP-3 crew “at-risk” by approaching “an unsafe distance” last Friday, 19th July, in international waters over the Caribbean Sea.

     El daño de las sanciones ha superado los $110.000 millones y esto no ha sido tomado en cuenta”. “American attempts to overthrow the legitimate government of Venezuela have become a clear illustration of violations of international law,” he added. He said that “economic terror has been unleashed” against the Chavista regime. Elliott Abrams, the special representative for Venezuela, said in a recent interview for Spain’s ABC that Donald Trump’s administration knows that “Russia has been crucial for Maduro to endure U.S. sanctions.” The U.S. Southern Command reported that a Venezuelan Air Force plane put the U.S. EP-3 crew “at-risk” by approaching “an unsafe distance” last Friday, 19th July, in international waters over the Caribbean Sea.

JULY 25, 2019


          WASHINGTON, D.C.     --     During a forum organized by the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy (FDD) in Washington, the US special representative for the Venezuelan crisis, Elliott Abrams, defended the imposition of sanctions to press for a regime change in Venezuela, which he considered a "dictatorship". “We are trying to cut the flow of funds to the regime, and I think we are having a considerable impact. The pressure will continue, tomorrow (Thursday) we will have more penalties. We continue to implement the sanctions to keep up the pressure, ”Abrams said, without detailing whether the new measures will be against those close to Maduro or sectors of the Venezuelan economy.

     Abrams also anticipated more sanctions against Havana, and did not rule out others against Moscow for its support of Maduro. "The pressures on Cuba have increased a lot since January and will continue to increase, and we have made it clear that it was because of their actions in Venezuela," he said. "In Russia, we are still thinking about what sanctions to apply, whether individual or sectoral sanctions," he added. Abrams stressed that Vladimir Putin's government is not "helping" Caracas "from a financial point of view," but it does help him sell his oil, subject to US sanctions. “(The Russians) are not giving Venezuela more money. They are taking money from Venezuela. However, they are helping to market oil and that is something we are thinking about, ”he said.
     US also penalized Cuba. The Donald Trump administration not only recently included Cubametales, the Cuban state oil import and export company, on its blacklist of the Treasury, but also tightened sanctions on the island, against which Washington has applied an economic embargo since 1962. In addition to the ban on cruise travel, the limitation of family remittances and the activation of Title III of the Helm-Burton Act, Washington added Cuba last month to its blacklist of human trafficking.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --   Juan Guaidó hardened his pulse to Nicolás Maduro yesterday after a night of chaos caused by a massive electrical failure. After weeks focused on exploring a dialogue with the Government, the head of Parliament, recognized as interim president for more than 50 countries, promoted the application of an inter-American treaty called TIAR, which authorizes the request of another State's intervention in case of aggression the sovereignty of a nation. The blackout again plunged the country into the darkness from Monday afternoon to early Tuesday.

     The step taken by Guaido does not imply the interruption of the negotiations sponsored by Norway on the island of Barbados. But it is a message in itself: to Chavismo, the so-called international community and the most radical sectors of the opposition, who show impatience with the strategy adopted. The Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance , also known as the Rio Treaty, has been in the air for months. In recent days it seemed clear that the head of the Legislature was going to use it as a warning out and as an internal shield. He did it in a session of the National Assembly held in Sadel Square, in the Caracas urbanization of Las Mercedes , after six months of his acclamation as agent in charge during an anti-Chavez mobilization.
     The TIAR states that an attack against a country on the continent "will be considered as an attack against all American countries." With this mechanism, Guaidó tries to leave the door open under the protection of a foreign State, since since January 23 its main objective has been to demonstrate the violation by the regime of the Constitution itself approved two decades ago by Hugo Chávez . The majority interpretation, raised precisely by the most intransigent opposition wing represented among others by María Corina Machado , is that this treaty paves the way for a hypothetical military intervention.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.   -- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday cut its forecast for the growth of Venezuela, forecasting that the economic contraction will be even deeper than expected. " The profound humanitarian crisis and economic implosion in Venezuela continue to have a devastating impact, and the economy is expected to contract around 35% in 2019 ," the entity said in an update of its report on "World Economic Outlook." (WEO for its acronym in English).

      The last report, published in April, projected a loss of Venezuelan GDP of 25%. The country, plunged into a political and humanitarian crisis under the regime of Nicolás Maduro, suffers a debacle of its economy, which in recent months has been aggravated by US sanctions and blackouts that paralyze the activity. Regarding the regional forecast, the agency carried out a "considerable downward revision" of its growth forecasts for Latin America in 2019, which reflects the deterioration of the landscape that affects large economies such as Brazil and Mexico. The IMF reported that at the beginning of the year the activity "significantly slowed down" in several economies in the region due to "idiosyncratic factors."

     " The region is expected to grow at a rate of 0.6% in 2019 (0.8 percentage points less than in the April report), and to rebound to 2.3% in 2020, " the entity said Tuesday your report The forecast for Brazil was cut 1.3 points with an expansion of 0.8% in 2019 and that for Mexico the reduction was 0.7 points to 0.9%. The Fund believes that uncertainty persists in Brazil regarding the approval of some structural reforms, especially that of pensions, while in Mexico investment remains weak and private consumption has slowed down as a reflection of the uncertainty generated in its opinion Some country policies.

JULY 24, 2019


          CARACAS, VENEZUELA     --     After the president in charge of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, in ordinary session of the National Assembly (AN) of this Tuesday, July 23, from the Alfredo Sadel Plaza in Las Mercedes, approved in a second discussion unanimously the entrance of Venezuela to the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (Tiar), now what is left for Venezuela? Guiadó had highlighted earlier days that the Tiar has nothing to do with the use of force, but that it refers to humanitarian assistance, and after being approved, I emphasize that it is not something magical, “it is not a button that is pressed ", He said.

      On May 16, deputy María Del Castillo, said that the purpose of Tiar, provides for cooperation between countries to ensure the peace of a country that has been threatened, or when internal conflicts in a country put peace at risk of the continent". He also noted that it will not depend on the United Nations Organization (UN), but by the Organization of American States (OAS), where the presidency in charge has his representative, Gustavo Tarre.

     The United States in the OAS, stressed that the body could have the votes to support the action of the AN, and that the procedure would be for the request of a member state at a meeting of the Tiar. "Then, a vote of the majority of the members that are part of the treaty to accept, is a decision that the new Venezuelan government can make," he said. This was stated by the American ambassador to the OAS, Carlos Trujillo last May 29, who stressed that the country that requests the support of the treaty can request "whatever they want." On that occasion, he said that many of the countries that have supported the issues of Venezuela in the body belong to the Tiar.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --   A new powerFUL blackout left much of Venezuela without electricity on Monday starting at 4:40 pm, said the state-run Corpoelec, which controls electricity service throughout the country. Venezuelan Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez said on Monday that an “electromagnetic attack” on the country’s main hydroelectric plant had caused the blackout affecting millions. “First indications received from the investigation ... point to the existence of an attack of electromagnetic character that sought to affect Guyana’s hydroelectricity generation system, (that country being) the main provider of this service in (this) country,” the minister told state-run VTV television.

      At least a dozen of the country’s federal agencies are being affected by the blackout, which is widespread in certain regions, while in Caracas, EFE was able to determine that the Metro service was suspended, stranding many commuters and forcing many others to walk to their destinations. Hundreds of reports about the blackout circulated on the social networks and local media reported that 16 of the country’s states were completely in the dark. The power outage once again created problems for Venezuelans in placing telephone calls, especially from one region to another, and resulted in failures in Internet connections in a country where almost everyone depends on a state-run entity for their electricity.

     The latest widespread blackout affecting Caracas occurred on April 10. However, power interruptions occur almost daily in the western states of Trujillo and Zulia, which borders on Colombia. Last March, Venezuela experienced an 11-day blackout after two major outages paralyzed the country, motivating the Nicolas Maduro regime to blame the political opposition and the US administration of Donald Trump. To resolve those problems, the Venezuelan regime began rationing electricity and continued to do so for almost two months, leaving 20 of the country’s 24 states in the dark for 20 hours each week. The opposition, meanwhile, said that corruption within the Electric Energy Ministry and poor management of billions of dollars destined for the sector were to blame for the current crisis.


   LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM   --  The British Conservative Party has put all its hopes in Boris Johnson to get out of its current state of ruin. The former president of London has won in the primary stories, with 66% support and 92,153 votes, compared to his rival, Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt, who has obtained a 34% endorsement and 46,656 ballots. The co-chair of the 1922 Committee (The parliamentary group that excludes deputies with the portfolio), Cheryl Gillan, has announced Johnson's victory this Tuesday, at the Queen Elizabeth II Convention Center, at the foot of Westminster.

     There are still a few hours before Johnson enters Downing Street and becomes the new prime minister of the United Kingdom, but the possible results, as seen from the beginning, that must remain in his career at the summit have been cleared. In a brief speech before the auditorium, more protocol than content, Johnson has nevertheless maintained the idea that has led to victory and that excites the fans: the Conservative Party, has promised, directed the Brexit, and will demonstrate "its historical ability to balance two opposing instincts: the desire to maintain a close relationship with the EU and the desire that this country can govern itself democratically."

     Theresa May wanted to keep the protocol until the end, so this Wednesday she will go to Parliament for a final control session. It will be easier in his political career, but probably easier. Once the parliamentary rite is over, the official information car, for the last time, one May until 10 Downing Street, the official residence and the workplace of the prime minister. Once the farewell address was delivered, he went to Buckingham Palace, where his resignation will be communicated to Queen Elizabeth II. What happens with time? Immediately afterwards, it will be Johnson who will appear before the queen to formally receive the request of a new Government

JULY 23, 2019


          CARACAS, VENEZUELA     --       Venezuela denounced yesterday Monday the incursion of a US aircraft into its airspace, an incident that occurs three days after a similar event, announced Communication Minister Jorge Rodríguez. The high official affirmed that a US "spy plane" made an incursion into the "flight information zone" of Venezuela during midday, and said that the aircraft "has not complied with the corresponding protocol." "It can not be that an aggressive plane, an American spy penetrates in areas that are the exclusive control of the Venezuelan state," Rodriguez said in a broadcast of the state television station after ensuring that the aircraft would be the same as it did on Friday.

     The minister considered the incident as another violation of international law and the constitution and said that during the year there have been 78 "violations" of US aircraft in Venezuelan airspace. In rejecting the incident, the head of the ruling National Constituent Assembly, Diosdado Cabello, said he expects the actions of the United States to remain in "threats", adding that "they have been flying across the border, all of Guajira, Zulia " The US Southern Command informed the day before on its Twitter account that a Venezuelan fighter flew aggressively near a US intelligence plane that was in the international airspace in the Caribbean.

     The US authorities indicated that their EP-3 plane was carrying out an internationally approved mission on Friday and that the Venezuelan SU-30 fighter followed closely behind, which they said put their crew at risk. Cabello considered the answer of the Southern Command to be a "child's explanation" and said that "no one believes her in the world". For his part, the Venezuelan Defense Minister, General in Chief Vladimir Padrino López, denounced that the US ship violated Venezuela's airspace on Friday and endangered commercial flights that took off from the nation's main airport. By identifying the US spacecraft as one dedicated to receiving electronic intelligence, the Venezuelan jet escorted it out of the region, Venezuelan authorities said.


   TEHRAN, IRAN --   Iran has announced Monday the arrest of 17 Iranian citizens and the death sentence of several of them, as a result of the dismantling of an espionage network in the service of the CIA, which it already reported last June . It is not the first time that Tehran claims to have dismantled similar cells , often for internal consumption, but the coincidence with the current tensions with the United States makes it fear that it is hardening its attitude.

     On this occasion, the Intelligence Ministry has even distributed photographs of the US agents who would have been in contact with the supposed Iranian spies who, if real, would be a setback for Washington. "The identified spies worked in key private sector centers linked to the economy, nuclear [research], infrastructures, the military field or cybernetics ... where they collected confidential information," the Ministry of Intelligence statement quotedby PressTV as saying , but from which other Iranian media have also echoed (all under state control).

      The general director of the Iranian counterintelligence, whose name has not been given, has explained at a press conference that the 17 arrests were carried out over the past year (from the Iranian calendar, which ended on March 21) and that several of them have been sentenced to death. Those who cooperated with the Iranian secret services to get information about EE. UU They have received long prison terms. Although he has assured that among the detainees there were no officials and that they did not manage to carry out any sabotage, the investigation is still open.


   MADRID, SPAIN   --  The Spanish National Court investigates the death of Juan Carlos Márquez, director of the Venezuelan oil company PDVSA during the time of Hugo Chávez, who was collaborating with the Justice in the case about the laundering plot of the former ambassador of Spain in Venezuela Raúl Morodo. The Spanish Court requested on Tuesday to confirm the cause of his death, since his body was found lifeless in Spain with signs of possible suicide. Initially, it was erroneously reported that Márquez had taken a plane to escape to the US, since the magistrate of the case, Santiago Pedraz, was informed that he was on the passenger list of a flight to Chicago and that the US authorities were going to order his immediate deportation to Spain.

      Pedraz had taken a statement last Friday after being arrested and released him with precautionary measures as he had collaborated in confessing facts related to the plot of Morodo, according to Efe sources of the investigation. He was summoned on Monday to testify at the National Court, but he did not show up, so the judge asked the police for information about his possible death. Marquez, who was a director of PDVSA, is being investigated in the case that last May arrested the son of Raúl Morodo, Alejo, and three other people who went to the judge and were released with precautionary measures.

     Apart from Morodo father and son, they are being investigated and Carlos Prada, a Venezuelan living in Spain linked to the Morodo for the alleged charges and money-laundering, his wife and the wife of one of those investigated, are being arrested. In the case it is investigated the collection of 4.5 million euros from PDVSA by Morodo son through alleged false legal advice contracts signed with the oil company between 2012 and 2015, when Raúl Morodo was no longer an ambassador in Venezuela. As suspected by the Spanish Prosecutor's Office, the money was then laundered through a complex web of companies created by the son and others investigated.

JULY 22, 2019


          WASHINGTON, D.C.     --      The US Southern Command denounced on Sunday that the crew of a Russian-made SU-30 Flanker aircraft of Venezuela, "aggressively" chased an American aircraft last Friday and that this action demonstrates the "irresponsible" military support of Russia to the regime of Nicolás Maduro. The incident occurred when the SU-30 Flanker pursued a US aircraft EP-3 at an "unsafe distance on July 19, endangering the crew and the aircraft," reported the Southern Command on his Twitter account.

"This action demonstrates Russia's irresponsible military support for Maduro's illegitimate regime and underscores Maduro's recklessness and irresponsible behavior, which undermines international laws and international efforts to counteract illicit trafficking," he said. He emphasized in a statement that the regime "demonstrates its contempt for international agreements that authorize the United States and other nations to carry out flights safely in international airspace."  The US military unit said that "after reviewing the video, we determined that the Russian-made fighter chased the EP-3 at an unsafe distance in international airspace for an extended period of time, endangering the safety of the crew and endangering the mission of EP-3. " The Maduro regime through its Operational Strategic Command of the Bolivarian Armed Force (CEOFANB), reported on Saturday that the US aircraft was an "electronic spy and telecommunications interception" plane that was violating international air treaties.

     "ALERT | Aerospace Defense System CODAI detected and intercepted US aircraft. EP-3E intelligence and electronic radio exploration in our Maiquetía flight information region, violating International Air Treaties in frank provocation to the RBV. # DialogoAvanza, "he said in his Twitter account. In a video posted on that same network, CEOFANB explained that the plane was detected by its Aerospace Defense System at 9:52 a.m. Friday flying over the north of the Venezuelan archipelago Los Roques in the Caribbean Sea and that the aircraft did not provide a flight plan nor had it been reported with Venezuela's air traffic services.


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --   The U.S. military rejected Venezuela’s claim that a U.S. intelligence aircraft flew over the South American nation’s airspace on Friday, saying the American jet was over international waters and had been “aggressively shadowed.” The U.S. Southern Command said Sunday on Twitter that the U.S. EP-3 “was performing a multi-nationally recognized & approved” mission when shadowed “at an unsafe distance” by a Venezuelan SU-30 Flanker, “jeopardizing the crew & aircraft.” Video of the incident was attached. In a second tweet the U.S. said the action “demonstrates Russia’s irresponsible military support” of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s government. The Sukhoi SU-30 is a twin-engine Russian fighter aircraft.

     Sunday’s comments were the first U.S. response to claims by officials with Maduro’s defense department that the U.S. had engaged in “a clear provocation” and acted in violation of international treaties. The competing descriptions may further roil Washington-Caracas relations at a time Secretary of State Michael Pompeo is visiting Latin America, and as a summit of so-called anti-imperialist countries is held in Venezuela’s capital. Venezuelan defense officials sad the U.S. aircraft entered local airspace over the Caribbean in a one-hour flight in breach of international treaties, until it was pursued by the Venezuelan air force. The flight created a safety risk for commercial aircraft in the vicinity of Simon Bolivar International Airport in Maiquetia, Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino said on Twitter.

     Venezuela identified the U.S. plane as an EP-3E Aries II, which is a reconnaissance version of the P-3 Orion produced by Lockheed Martin Corp. Maduro’s government on Saturday started a two-day summit of the Non Aligned Movement, with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and Russia’s deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov in attendance. Pompeo has visited Argentina and Ecuador in the past few days and is traveling Sunday to Mexico and Honduras. The U.S. has been trying to coalesce support around National Assembly leader Juan Guaido since the body declared him Venezuela’s interim president in late January. More than 50 countries now support Guaido, and the U.S. regularly announces new sanctions against Maduro and his associates.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.    --    The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said on Saturday in Ecuador that as long as Cuba continues to protect the ruling Nicolás Maduro there will be no "fair and equitable elections" in Venezuela as the opposition demands. "As long as the Cubans continue to protect Maduro, they will not be able to hold fair and just elections," the official repeated at a joint press conference with Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno, whom he visited in the port of Guayaquil (southwest). Pompeo added, in a statement in English that was translated, that "it seems incomprehensible to me that free and fair elections can be carried out if Maduro continues" in power and that "there may be some creative way of leaving it out."

     The vice president of Venezuela, Delcy Rodriguez, went to Managua on Friday to tell the president of the United States, Donald Trump, to stop intervening in the internal affairs of Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela. "Take your hands of Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela" because "more we will never be anyone's backyard," Rodriguez said in a speech with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega for the 40th anniversary of the Sandinista revolution. Washington is the main support of opposition leader Juan Guaidó, recognized as interim president of Venezuela by more than 50 countries, including Ecuador.

      With mediation from Norway, Maduro and Guaidó missions hold a reserved dialogue in Barbados. The opposition wants Maduro to step aside from power and to hold new elections, considering that his second term, which began last January, resulted from fraudulent elections. "Without minimizing what is happening in Barbados, the talks, it is inconceivable that elections are held that really represent the Venezuelan people if Maduro is still present in the country," said Pompeo, who is touring Latin America that began in Argentina and will continue the Sunday in El Salvador and Mexico, where he will meet with leaders Nayib Bukele and Andrés Manuel López Obrador, respectively.

ULY 19, 2019


           WASHINGTON, D.C.     --      The vice president of the United States (USA), Mike Pence, denounced on Thursday attacks by the governments of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela and Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua against leaders of the Catholic Church.   In a conference on religious freedom in the State Department, Pence questioned the "dictator" Maduro and the "regime" of Ortega and his wife and vice president Rosario Murillo, for harassing members of the clergy and the Catholic hierarchy that support dissidents .

"In Venezuela, the dictator Nicolás Maduro is using his so-called anti-hate law to prosecute the Catholic clergy to speak out against his brutal regime, which has impoverished millions in this once prosperous country," said Pence. Venezuela, once an oil power, is mired in an economic debacle that Washington attributes to the Maduro government. "Nicolás Maduro has brought nothing but misery to the people of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro is a dictator with no legitimate right to power, and Nicolás Maduro must leave," Pence stressed amid applause, AFP reported.

On Nicaragua, the vice president said that Ortega and Murillo "continue their attack on the faith and human rights." "The regime violently suppresses dissent, attacks opponents and condones the thugs who repress and intimidate the leaders of the Catholic Church for defending democracy and religious freedom," he said. The US government considers Venezuela and Nicaragua part of a "troika of tyranny," which also includes Cuba. However, Pence did not mention the island's government in his speech this Thursday.


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --   U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo departed for Latin America Thursday to meet face to face with leaders there, amid difficult negotiations with Mexico and Central American countries over how to best stem the flow of migrants to the southern U.S. border. “From July 19th to the 21st, the secretary will visit Buenos Aires, Argentina; Ecuador, Mexico City, San Salvador, where he will expand cooperation on security issues; reinforce U.S. commitment to human rights and democracy, particularly support for the people of Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela, and their struggle for freedom; and to enhance economic partnerships and to expand economic opportunities for our citizens," State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus said during a press briefing on Tuesday.

     While in Argentina, Pompeo will participate in a counterterrorism conference with regional allies, timed to mark the 25th anniversary of the bombing of a Jewish center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people, and has been linked to Hezbollah and Iran by Argentine prosecutors. No one has ever been held accountable for the worst terrorist attack in Argentine history. The White House released a statement marking the anniversary and highlighting Thursday's ministerial focused on counterterrorism cooperation.

     "The United States and its partners throughout the Western Hemisphere will continue to take meaningful steps to ensure that our countries defend against the threat of terrorism and that we continue to do all that we can to protect our citizens," the White House said. "Through these efforts, we will more effectively identify and disrupt terrorist threats and networks around the world." Migration is likely to be a major issue at his other stops. Some experts say the United States must address the root causes, or “push factors” that are compelling people to flee their homes. “You have to look at the lack of opportunity, the gang activity, the weak institutions in this region, in Central America if you are ever going to stop people from making what is a difficult and dangerous journey to the United States. These people don’t leave taking the decision lightly," Benjamin Gedan of the Wilson Center said.


   BRUSSELS, BELGIUM    --    The European Parliament plenary session on Thursday urged the European Union (EU) to impose more sanctions on Venezuela for "repression" in the country, after the torture and death of Captain Rafael Acosta Arévalo while in the custody of the Venezuelan security forces . The resolution, which was approved with 455 votes in favor, 85 against and 105 abstentions, reiterates its full support to what it considers legitimate interim president, Juan Guaidó, and to the National Assembly, and supports the facilitation process promoted by Norway, which should lead to hold free, transparent and credible elections.

     The European Parliament considers that the European authorities should restrict the movements and freeze the assets and visas of the Venezuelan authorities responsible for violations of human rights and repression, as well as those of their closest relatives. The resolution, one of the first texts approved in this legislature in the European Parliament, received the support of the European People's Party (PPE), the Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S & D), Renew Europe (RE) and the Conservatives group and Reformists (ECR). The MEPs condemn the repression and violence in the country and express their solidarity with the Venezuelan people and their "sincere condolences" to the family and friends of the dead, such as Captain Acosta.

     Acosta Arevalo was tortured to death after his arrest eight days earlier for his alleged participation in a plan to overthrow Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, according to his defense and opposition. Parliament also emphasizes the direct responsibility of Maduro and his armed forces and intelligence in the "indiscriminate use of violence" to repress the democratic transition in the country. "In line with the report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, on violations of fundamental freedoms in Venezuela, (Parliament) calls for an independent mechanism to investigate extrajudicial executions carried out in security operations ", Says the resolution, which also demands that those responsible be held accountable.

JULY 18, 2019


           WASHINGTON, D.C.     --     Eight countries submitted for the consideration of the other 26 members of the Organization of American States a draft resolution that calls for an independent investigation into what it describes as "grave and systematic" violations of human rights in Venezuela. The document expresses a firm condemnation of the abuses attributed to the Nicolás Maduro regime, including torture, illegal and arbitrary detentions, extrajudicial executions and forced disappearances. The draft does not entrust a specific entity with responsibility for the investigation but requires full access to Venezuelan territory for the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), which has not received an invitation from the Venezuelan authorities since its last visit in 2002.

      The executive secretary of the IACHR, Paulo Abrão, told reporters that if the resolution is adopted, the Permanent Council of the OAS must "explore the different possible formulas for the implementation" of an investigation. He added that if the IACHR will be in charge of that investigation, it would be willing to consider the creation of a joint investigation mechanism with the UN, something unprecedented. "You can explore this possibility. The range of options has to be sufficiently open, "he said. Paraguayan Elisa Ruiz said that along with the other sponsors -Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, the United States and Peru- plan to submit the document for approval at a date yet to be determined and the next few days will be devoted to adding support .

     The proposal reached the OAS just days after the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, presented a broad report in which she accused the Maduro regime of causing 5,287 deaths during security operations during 2018. Maduro recalled his diplomatic staff at the OAS in April but Secretary General Luis Almagro - like most of the member countries of the organization - recognized opposition leader Juan Guaidó as interim president, alleging that Maduro's re-election in 2018 was fraudulent. The OAS also recognized the diplomatic emissary of Guaidó, Gustavo Tarre, who witnessed the session occupying the seat corresponding to Venezuela. Tarre said that the goal is to get the resolution adopted by consensus, which would make a nominal vote unnecessary. "Consensus is important because this is not a political discussion but a principle," said Tarre.


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --   The commander of the Southern Command of the US Armed Forces, Admiral Craig Faller, confirmed on Tuesday the presence of Russian troops in Venezuela despite the fact that the president, Donald Trump, said in June that the Kremlin had guaranteed him they had withdrawn the “majority” of his military personnel from that country. “There are Russian troops and there are contractors from the Russian defense sector in Venezuela, lending support to (President Nicolas) Maduro’s regime,” denounced Faller during a hearing on Tuesday before the Committee of Armed Services of the Senate.

     At the end of March, the government of President Vládimir Putin sent two planes to Caracas with some 100 soldiers, alleging that they were military specialists who carried out maintenance work on equipment supplied to Venezuela. Washington quickly criticized this maneuver, which came to be labeled a “direct threat” by White House National Security Adviser John Bolton. A few days later, however, Trump said in a Twitter message that Moscow had assured him that he had begun to withdraw his military. “Russia has informed us that it has withdrawn most of its personnel from Venezuela,” the president said in a brief tweet, an information that would end up being denied by President Putin just three days later.

     This Tuesday, during the hearing, Faller reiterated that Russia executes in Latin America, “as in the rest of the world,” a disinformation campaign whose objective is to “disorient” citizens. Also, the admiral warned the senators of the growing Russian interference in Latin America and denounced that Moscow intends to “sow discord and lack of confidence” among the countries of the region, to “push” to “autocratic” nations such as Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. Faller made a tour of South America at the end of June, which led him to visit Argentina and Chile, whose main objective was to strengthen US alliances in the region due to the growing influence of countries such as Russia and China.


   UNITED NATIONS, NEW YORK CITY     --    The crisis in Venezuela explains the increase in hunger in Latin America, due to the fact that the proportion of people suffering from hunger almost quadrupled, from 6.2% between 2012 and 2014 to 21.2% between 2016 and 2018, until the 6.8 million Venezuelans. The number of hungry people in Latin America and the Caribbean grew by 2018 for the third consecutive year to affect 42.5 million people, in part due to the economic slowdown and the crisis in Venezuela, according to the United Nations (UN) ).

      The new report on the global state of food security and nutrition, presented by five United Nations agencies, argues that the percentage of hungry people in the region increased from 6.2% of the population in 2015 to 6.5% in 2017 , level that was maintained the following year.The main reason for this increase is found in South America, which is home to the majority of undernourished people in the region and where the prevalence of undernourishment rose from 4.6% in 2013 to 5.5% in 2017. The slowdown and recession observed between 2012 and 2016 in the economies of the area are associated with the decline in international prices of raw materials exported in a context of weak recovery from the global financial crisis.

     The Deputy Director of Economics of Agricultural Development of the Organization of the UN for Food and Agriculture (FAO), Marco Sanchez Cantillo, told Efe that, in view of the deceleration and dependence on trade in these products, "the income tributaries have been greatly reduced ". "The tendency to implement social programs, which had been influencing the reduction of hunger until three years ago, has thus been highly affected," he said. Unemployment increased, family income contracted and the number of poor people went from 166 to 175 million between 2013 and 2015 after years of declines in the region, according to the report.

JULY 17, 2019


           BRUSSELS, BELGIUM      --     The European Union (EU) threatened on Tuesday to impose new sanctions on Venezuela if "concrete results" are not achieved in the discussions between the Maduro regime and the opposition in Barbados, sponsored by Norway. to seek solutions to the serious political crisis, "If they do not obtain concrete results in the ongoing negotiations, the EU will further expand its restrictive measures," said the head of European diplomacy, Federica Mogherini, in a statement on behalf of European countries.Delegates of the regime of Nicolás Maduro, and of the opposition leader, Juan Guaidó, recognized as interim president by over fifty countries, arrived a day ago to Barbados to resume the dialogues, after agreeing days ago the installation of a work table.

      The Europeans welcomed the resumption of the talks sponsored by Norway, as a "channel to overcome the crisis", but urged "to urgently achieve a result that allows for transparent and internationally supervised presidential elections." The EU, that sanctioned 18 Venezuelan officials since 2017 and imposed an arms embargo on the country, also expressed its willingness to work towards new sanctions for "the members of the security forces involved in torture and other serious human rights violations." Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell called for sanctions against those responsible during a meeting with his European counterparts in Brussels, after highlighting the report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet.

      Bachelet's report "confirms in a clear and detailed manner the scope and gravity of human rights violations, the erosion of the rule of law and the dismantling of democratic institutions in the country," the EU statement said. Mogherini, on behalf of the 28 countries of the bloc, cites as an example the "tragic death" of Rafael Acosta, a 50-year-old Venezuelan soldier who died on June 29 in a hospital in Caracas for alleged torture during his detention. In addition to the sanctions, the EU launched in February along with Latin American and European countries the International Contact Group (GCI), an initiative that seeks presidential elections "free and fair" in Venezuela.


    CARACAS, VENEZUELA --   The president in charge of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, addressed on Tuesday, July 16, that they are still working on all the boards to get out of the tragedy in which Venezuela finds itself, emphasizing that the country is still in a dictatorship. He thanked the position of the European Union, which also makes efforts to restore democracy in the country, and explained that the world's position is to seek a solution to the Venezuelan crisis. "It is a duty for all of us to get up, continue fighting and exercise our power as citizens. Today it is no coincidence that these sanctions are presented in Europe by High Commissioner Federica Mogherini, "he said.

      On the return of his delegation to Barbados to resume talks with the Chavista regime he explained that it is in a process of mediation and are putting all the pressure necessary for the cessation of the dictatorship. He mentioned that it would be childish to trust the regime that killed a Frigate Captain, and stressed that the regime only has to generate fear. Finally, he declared that soon the National Assembly (AN) deputies will finish approving the TIAR.

     At the same time, the government of the dictator Nicolás Maduro rejected the statements of the High Representative of the European Union (EU), Federica Mogherini, who in her opinion, carries out interventionist actions and threats against Venezuela. "Venezuela rejects statements by the European Union's high representative, Federica Mogherini, for meddling once more in internal affairs and proffering unacceptable threats, at a time when synderesis is vital for dialogue among Venezuelans," the Republic's foreign minister said. , Jorge Arreaza, through his account in the social network Twitter. Arreaza's statements were accompanied by a statement issued by the Foreign Ministry through its website, reported AVN.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA     --Nicolás Maduro Moros finished configuring the military power with the heads of the Strategic Integral Defense Regions (REDI) and the Integral Defense Operating Zones (ZODI). He had already appointed the High Military Command and, with these new appointments, configured the Expanded Military High Command. It includes two unconditional men of Diosdado Cabello among the nine of the High Command: the MG Alexis José Rodríguez Cabello as commander of the Army and the MG Jesús María Mantilla Oliveros, second commander and Chief of the Joint Chiefs of the Operational Strategic Command. Not bad. Among the officers of the National Guard, it is evident that Maduro does not include any unconditional man to Diosdado, who has links with Pimentel and Maldonado Guerrero, who remain as Division generals, while he promoted Méndez López, who never competed with the others. two officers.

     But let's see what happens down the military pyramid. Of the nine Strategic Regions, there are two men of Diosdado Cabello: the MG Ovidio of Jesús Delgado Ramírez, in the Western REDI; and MG Domingo Antonio Hernández Larez, at the REDI Capital. In the case of the 25 operational zones, Maduro took care not to include any unconditional president of the National Constituent Assembly (ANC), shielding himself with some officers who belonged to the Presidential Honor Guard. The Integral Defense Regions started on September 13, 2008, as part of the new Organic Law of the National Armed Forces (LOFANB), with the mission of planning, conducting and executing integral defense operations.

      These are the new bosses: 1) In the Western was named the greatest general (Ej) Ovidio of Jesus Delgado Ramírez, who replaced the MG Fabio Enrique Zavarse Pabón, who now is the new general commander of the National Guard. 2) In the Los Llanos Region, the MG Víctor Augusto Palacios García was replaced by the MG that is now held by José Rafael Silva Aponte. For the Central Region the MG Juan Carlos Du Boulay Perozo was appointed, who replaces the MG Domingo Antonio Hernández Larez, who now goes to the REDI Capital, where he replaced General Alexis Rodríguez Cabello, who in turn goes to the High Command. 3) For the Oriental REDI, the MG César Wilfredo Méndez López was appointed, replacing Admiral William Miguel Serantes Pinto, who in turn passed for the Guayana region. 4) Admiral Alexánder José Velásquez Bastidas, who replaced Admiral Eladio José Gregorio Jiménez Rattia, was appointed for the Maritime and Integral REDI. 5) In the Andes the MG Federico Guillermo Guzmán Bornia was named, who replaces the MG Manuel Gregorio Bernal Martínez, who goes to the Military High Command. 6) In the REDI Guayana was appointed Admiral William Miguel Serantes Pinto, who replaces the MG Jesús María Mantilla Oliveros, who was transferred to the High Military Command. And 7) n the Maritime and Insular REDI was named Admiral Alexánder José Velásquez Bastidas, who replaces Admiral Eladio José Gregorio Jiménez Rattia.

JULY 16, 2019


            BRIDGETOWN, BARBADOS    --     The parties held talks in Barbados between July 8 and 10, after which Norway announced that they agreed to set up a table that will work "continuously and expeditiously." As a result, delegates of President Nicolás Maduro, and opposition leader Juan Guaidó, arrived in Barbados to resume the dialogues held in search of solutions to the serious political crisis in Venezuela, the parties announced. "We continue with the fundamental approach of President Nicolás Maduro: a permanent dialogue for peace (...), for the constitutional and democratic resolution of political controversies," said Communication Minister Jorge Rodríguez, who announced in a video the arrival of the government delegation.

     Rodriguez is in the Caribbean island along with the chancellor, Jorge Arreaza, the governor Héctor Rodríguez and other two representatives of the oficialismo, among them Larry Devoe, of the state National Council of Human Rights. On Sunday, the envoys of Guaidó, recognized as the agent in charge of Venezuela for half a hundred countries, had moved. Its objective is "to achieve the change that puts an end to the suffering of Venezuelans," said the press office of the legislator on Twitter. The parties held a round of talks in Barbados between July 8 and 10, after which Norway, which acts as mediator, announced that they had agreed to set up a round table that will work "continuously and expeditiously".

      According to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, after that meeting, it was foreseen that the parties would hold "consultations to be able to advance in the negotiation". Maduro, under whose management Venezuela fell into the worst crisis in its recent history, blames the debacle of the former oil power on sanctions of the United States (US) to suffocate it. Meanwhile, Guaidó has reiterated that the rapprochements are part of a strategy to expel the socialist president from power. The opposition leader considers that the second term started by Maduro in January was the result of fraudulent elections. The delegation sent by Guaidó last week to Barbados was made up of legislator Stalin González, ex-deputy Gerardo Blyde, former minister Fernando Martínez Mottola and former electoral director Vicente Díaz.


    CARACAS, VENEZUELA --   The objective is to get out of the deep crisis in Venezuela. The instrument demanded by millions of opponents of Chavismo is a presidential election with guarantees. The most radical sector of the regime refuses to let this possibility even be the subject of debate. However, that is the main dispute that faces the envoys of Nicolás Maduro and Juan Guaidó. The contacts resumed this week in Barbados under the auspices of Norway and, according to that Government, will remain in "a table that will work continuously and expeditiously".

      The talks between the representatives of the Government and of the National Assembly, reactivated with discretion in the Caribbean island, suppose the umpteenth attempt of approximation between the parts after several disappointments. The novelty is that the political and institutional paralysis, the economic crisis and the deterioration of democracy are increasingly unbearable. These premises, together with the growing international pressure around Nicolás Maduro, have reopened the door to dialogue.

      According to Guaidó, recognized as interim president by more than 50 countries, he only represents a fight front. The goal has not moved away, he says, from the mantra of the opposition. That is, cessation of usurpation, transitional government and free elections. Until now, the Executive had only agreed to the possibility of advancing legislative elections, an insufficient offer. Therefore, the new rounds of contacts seek to go further, even between difficulties. The scenario of a Maduro resignation is more than unlikely in the short term. However, the Minister of Communication, Jorge Rodríguez, described the approach as a "successful exchange". The Deputy Speaker of the Parliament, Stalin González, member of the opposition delegation that traveled to Barbados, called for progress to "put an end to the suffering of Venezuelans." "We need answers and results", he asserted.


   MADRID, SPAIN    --Spain asked the European Union (EU) "sanctions" against those responsible for torture in Venezuela, said on Monday his chancellor Josep Borrell, who considered "priority" that the negotiation between government and opposition "bear fruit." "Tragic deaths of people detained under the control of the Venezuelan political police have occurred," said Borrell, calling for the punishment of people "who have been involved in torture followed by death." "But sanctions can not be an instrument that disturbs the hope that the Oslo process has raised.

     The first priority is for this process to continue, "the Spanish foreign minister told a news conference in Brussels. Although not listed as a point on the agenda, mainly devoted to the nuclear agreement with Iran, the EU foreign ministers also reviewed the situation in Venezuela during their monthly meeting on Monday. Borrell, proposed as the next head of EU diplomacy, expressed support for the report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, who reported executions and torture, among others. Venezuela is mired in a deep political, economic and humanitarian crisis, which worsened in 2018 with the re-election of socialist Nicolás Maduro as head of the country, in elections unknown by the opposition.

     Government delegates and the opposition leader agreed to establish a permanent working table to try to resolve the crisis after a series of dialogues under the mediation of Norway, which has sponsored a solution since May. "We believe that the Oslo process is the best option we have on the table" for both parties to "negotiate," said Borrell, who stressed that Maduro controls "the administration, the army and the territory." The EU, which sanctioned 18 Venezuelan officials since 2017, launched the International Contact Group in February together with Latin American and European countries, an initiative that seeks "free and fair" presidential elections in Venezuela.

JULY 15, 2019


            THE VATICAN    --     Pope Francis URGES all the parties involved on Sunday to reach an agreement in Venezuela as soon as possible to end the suffering of his people, after praying the Angelus in St. Peter's Square in the Vatican. After praying the Angelus leaning on the window of the pontifical palace, Francisco expressed his closeness to the Venezuelan people "particularly affected by the lengthening of the crisis." And he asked to pray to the Lord to "inspire and enlighten the parties in the cause so that they can arrive as soon as possible at an agreement that puts an end to the suffering of the people for the good of the country and of the entire region."

     Venezuela is going through an aggravation of the political crisis since last January, when Nicolás Maduro swore a new term as president whose legitimacy is not recognized by the opposition and much of the international community and, in response, and the head of the Venezuelan Parliament, Juan Guaidó, He was sworn in as President in Charge of Venezuela and, therefore, more than 50 nations - with the United States at the helm - recognize it. A report on Venezuela officially presented on July 5 by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, denounces that, especially since 2016, the Maduro regime and its institutions have launched a strategy "aimed at neutralizing , repress and criminalize the political opposition, and those who criticize the government "with arbitrary detentions, mistreatment and torture of critics.

     It documents, among other serious incidents, more than 6,800 extrajudicial executions by the Venezuelan security forces between January 2018 and May 2019. A few weeks ago, a Vatican delegation attended the meeting held in Stockholm on the humanitarian emergency in Venezuela. The Vatican had participated in 2017 at the negotiating table between the government and the opposition along with a group of Latin American ex-presidents and the Spanish, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. In a letter a few months ago, Maduro asked the Pope for help in mediating the situation in the country, but Francisco reminded him in another letter that what was agreed in the past meetings "was not followed by concrete actions" by the regime.


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --   The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, said that US pressure on the government of Nicolás Maduro is "fundamental" for the success of the dialogue to resolve the crisis in Venezuela and asked to increase it. The dialogue between government and opposition, which they discussed this week under the mediation of Norway in Barbados, depends on the "sanctions" and "credible threats" campaign by the United States to force a regime change in Caracas, said Almagro, along with the representative US special for the Venezuelan crisis, Eliott Abrams.

      "More than what is negotiated on the negotiation table itself, if something comes out there will be external factors, such as the pressure of sanctions and other credible threats made by the US administration," he said at a press conference at the OAS headquarters. A resounding opponent of Maduro, whose government he considers illegitimate and "criminal", Almagro emphasized that "when a process of dialogue begins, neither internal nor external pressure on the dictatorship can be reduced." "We have to increase it, because the results will depend on the pressure being increased." The secretary general of the OAS said that the "Oslo-Barbados process" requires "essentially" the pressure of Washington on the elements that "oppress the Venezuelan people", in particular "the Cuban factor".

      "While 15,000-22,000 Cubans are in Venezuela, the return to democracy in the country is unthinkable. There may be a semi-institutional facelift, but not a return to democracy, "he said, referring to the support of the Cuban government for Maduro, which Havana denies having political-military implications. Abrams did not comment on the battery of financial sanctions that the United States has imposed in the last two years on dozens of relatives of Maduro and Venezuelan entities, as well as on the oil sector, key to the South American country's economy. "The United States wants a peaceful return to democracy in Venezuela, so it goes without saying that we hope the negotiations will be successful," said the diplomat, noting that opposition leader Juan Guaidó, whom Washington recognizes as interim president, participates in the dialogue "to end the regime".

JULY 12, 2019


            CARACAS,    VENEZUELA   --     The third round in negotiations between the government in dispute and representatives of the government in charge of Venezuela on the island of Barbados culminated Wednesday night, according to a message on Twitter published by the Minister of Communication and Information that responds to Nicolás Maduro. Sources close to the dialogue table told the Voice of America that there were tensions between the parties seeking to reach an agreement to stop the severe crisis that Venezuela is suffering. Minister Jorge Rodriguez said it was a "successful exchange sponsored by the Norwegian government," but offered no other details. The closing of negotiations on Wednesday comes sooner than expected, as the table was scheduled to be operational until the end of this week.

     This day of the permanent dialogue table for peace ends in Barbados, a space for settling disputes through constitutional and peaceful means. Successful exchange sponsored by the Government of Norway. We thank the 1st Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley for her hospitality. According to Maduro, this third round followed a six-point agenda, including the holding of presidential elections with a change to the National Electoral Council, the return of Chavez to the National Assembly and the elimination of the National Constituent Assembly. Another essential point would be to determine whether or not Maduro would be in the presidential elections to be held in a period obetween nine and 12 months.

     The table had been installed last Monday in Barbados. It is the continuation of an initiative promoted by Norway since last February. It is not clear until now what the agreements would be in this third occasion in which representatives of the government in charge led by Juan Guaidó and close friends of Maduro are facing. So far there has been no information from the representatives of the government in charge about the development of this third phase of the negotiation. It is expected that Juan Guaidó, who is touring the interior of the country, offers statements this afternoon. A source of VOA aware of the negotiation process believes there may be an agreement for elections to be held in nine months. The issue would be if the ruling party would allow the four million Venezuelans abroad to exercise their right to vote.


    CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --    The President of Colombia Ivan Duque warns that if Venezuela protects Jesús Santrich he will denounce it internationally
A fugitive legislator of the demobilized FARC guerrillas accused by the United States of conspiring to traffic cocaine could be hidden in Venezuela, Colombian President Iván Duque said on Thursday, warning that he will denounce internationally any country that offers him protection. Seuxis Paucias Hernández, better known as Jesús Santrich, disappeared on June 30 after leaving his escorts in a training and reincorporation area for ex-combatants in the department of Cesar, near the border with Venezuela, in what has been considered by the government as a mockery of the peace agreement.

     The Supreme Court of Justice ordered on Tuesday to capture the exnegociador of the demobilized FARC, after he failed to make an appointment to file an inquiry in the process in which he is accused of having negotiated in 2017 a shipment of 10 tons of cocaine valued at 320 million dollars. dollars that was going to be sent to the United States. The former rebel leader denies the charges. "What if it can be in Venezuela? That probability is real, because it is close to the area from which he fled, "Duque said in an interview with a station in the city of Barranquilla. "I also said it publicly: no country can give it protection. And if there is someone who is giving him protection, we are going to denounce him internationally.

    But we can not let him make fun of the Colombians, "he added. Although when he disappeared he had no arrest warrant, the government accused Santrich of evading his responsibility to justice. Santrich, 52, had assumed as a congressman in early June, after the Supreme Court ordered his release after another court recognized him as a legislator after having spent more than a year in jail on drug charges. The exnegociador of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) assumed one of the 10 seats in the Congress that granted that group converted into a political party a peace agreement signed in 2016 to end a conflict of more than half a century that has left 260,000 dead.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA    -- Diosdado threatens to apply "tún tún operation" against the diplomat Reinaldo Díaz Ohep

Yesterday Diosdado Cabello ordered "Operation Tun Tun" against Reinaldo Diaz, several deputies and opposition leaders under the excuse of having supported a leadership program in Venezuela for young people called "Future Present". The "Operation tun tun" is an operation executed by irregular groups, collectives, SEBIN or FAES, to intimidate our homes in Venezuela, to raid with impunity and to persecute the opposition political leaders. In previous cases, this operation has transcended borders to Colombia and other countries; and the outcome of the operation has ended in direct attacks against the physical integrity of relatives and leaders, reaching the end of the terrible case of Cap. Acosta Arévalo or Metropolitan Councilman Fernando Albán that ended with his murder.

     The assignment of "Operation Tun Tun" against Reinaldo Díaz is not a fortuitous designation, it represents a direct retaliation of the work that has been done in Mexico to stop the advance of the dictatorship and the positioning of the illegitimate Ambassador of the Arias Cárdenas dictatorship. We warn that this situation is very serious, we have already put on notice of this, several actors of the Mexican government and we make public that any situation that happens to the family of Reinaldo Díaz in Venezuela and / or here in Mexico will be the responsibility of Diosdado Cabello , of the representatives of the regime and its representative in Mexico, Francisco Arias Cárdenas.

    Formally, we will proceed to carry out the pertinent procedures in this case with the complaint before the IACHR, since this complements the scheme of political persecution of the death squads (FAES) presented in the Bachelet report. The work for the freedom of Venezuela will remain intact, the representation of our President, Juan Guaidó in Mexico, remains firm and we know that, with the support of the international community, we will be able to combat the arbitrariness of a regime that every day reaffirms its policy of violation of human rights. Signature: Office of Representation of the Foreign Policy Commission of the National Assembly of Venezuela and of the Special Envoy of the President in Charge of Venezuela Juan Gerardo Guiadó Márquez; Reinaldo J. Díaz Ohep.

JULY 11, 2019



     CARACAS,    VENEZUELA   --     The dictator of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, announced that the guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar will support the process of dialogue that takes place with the opposition in Barbados. The Norwegian government is the mediator of these talks between the parties. However, his following of the late Indian guru Sai Baba has sparked the most controversy. In 2005 Maduro visited India with his wife to seek the guru’s blessings and advanced a center in the Venezuelan capital to follow his teachings. This reverence for Sai Baba seems to come more from a desire to seek spiritual salvation and also as a political tool.

     Now, the Venezuelan dictator has hired the services of Indian guru named Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar to support the Noruegan negotiations. In a message on Twitter, he wrote: "Thankful and pleased with the services of the Humanitarian Leader and Ambassador of Peace Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. Man of great experience as a mediator in the solution of conflicts in several countries of the world. Their contributions come to strengthen the process of dialogue and peace. "The guru now sits at the dialogue table advising the Maduro delegation

     Today, thanks to the efforts of the Norwegian government, the process of dialogue with the Venezuelan opposition began. We have a 6-point agenda that touches on all the fundamental issues for national life, and I'm sure we will achieve important agreements. I have faith in the Dialogue! Maduro revealed that the first meeting in Barbados lasted five hours and that the government delegation presented a six-point agenda with "the vision of the whole country" on "the issues of need: economic, social, cultural, of all kinds." But he did not give details. "From that integral agenda, if you work with good will and there is no gringo interventionism to damage that table, I am sure that partial agreements will come out for the benefit of Venezuela," said Maduro. "Step by step, with strategic patience, we open the way to peace," he said.

VENEZUELAN INTERIM PRESIDENT JUAN GUaido affirms that conditions exist to pull venezuela out of the crisis

    CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --    The speaker of Venezuela’s National Assembly, Juan Guaido, recognized by some 50 countries as the nation’s interim president,  affirmed this Tuesday that the conditions exist to pull Venezuela out of its ongoing national crisis, after his meeting with European Union mediator Enrique Iglesias. “We now have the conditions to leave the crisis behind... of course there has been progress, we have created the opportunities,” the opposition leader told reporters after his private meeting with Iglesias, sent by the EU to achieve some peace and harmony in the Caribbean country.

      About the talks with the Nicolas Maduro regime that were renewed this week in Barbados with the support of the Norwegian government, Guaido asked one and all “not to commit the mistake of seeing a single mechanism as the solution,” and for that reason insisted on maintaining both internal and foreign pressure on the party in power. He said the opposition’s agenda “in any kind of mediation, as in the case of the International Contact Group,” is based on ending the usurped presidency, installing a transition government and calling the Venezuelan people to “free” elections with international observers.

     “I don’t trust a single mechanism,” the opposition leader said, asking citizens to “continue to mobilize” protests in the streets. Taking part in Guaido’s meeting with Iglesias were lawmakers Angel Medina, Guillermo Luces, Manuel Texeira, Arnoldo Benitez, Gustavo Pratt and Carlos Prosperi. Iglesias arrived at the legislature close to 9:00 am and left about half an hour later, without taking questions from the press. In a statement to the media, opposition lawmaker Carlos Valero offered apologies to the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, Michelle Bachelet, for the “insults” aimed at her by the executive branch.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA    -- The Venezuelan National Assembly agreed on Tuesday to send to the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court the report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, to be included in the investigations carried out by this body on crimes perpetrated by the regime of Nicolás Maduro. The decision is part of an agreement approved by the Congress, which has an opposition majority, after a debate of more than three hours in which the report presented last week by Bachelet in Geneva was thoroughly discussed.

      The report acknowledges the existence of serious human rights violations during the Maduro administration, which includes the death of 5,287 people during security operations last year. For Venezuelans, the diagnosis of the crisis is not the only important thing, it is crucial to seek solutions to the complex humanitarian emergency and stop the catastrophe in doors. We are approaching real solutions to the tragedy that we live. Thanks to all those who insisted on reporting and accompanying in spite of the persecution. This report is an important turning point in international pressure on the dictatorship. The democrats of the world are obliged to address the serious crisis that Venezuela suffers.

     "What we have denounced for years in Venezuela, persecution, torture, violation of freedom of expression ... today has paid off," said interim president of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó. "From now on, the international community must say that Venezuela suffers from a dictatorship," said Guaidó, and the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court filed last year on a request for prosecution against the Maduro government presented by Canada, Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Paraguay and Peru, nations that requested an investigation into crimes against humanity that would have perpetrated in Venezuela, after which three judges were appointed to follow the case. The agreement of the National Assembly comes a day after Maduro condemned the report de Bachelet alleging that he was "loaded with lies, manipulations, inaccurate data, false data".

JULY 10, 2019


       WASHINGTON, D.C.  --     Admiral Craig Faller, head of the US Southern Command, explained on Tuesday, July 9, before the Committee of Services of the Armed Forces of his country, the risks of the stay of Nicolás Maduro in the Miraflores Palace and the dangerous influence of Russia, China and Iran in the Western Hemisphere. "Criminal organizations, drug trafficking, illegal immigration, violent extremists, corruption, all enabled by a weak government, are the main security challenges in Latin America," are some of the reasons listed by Faller.

      "China is Venezuela's largest state creditor and has charged the Venezuelan people with more than 60 billion dollars in debt and is exporting the surveillance technology used to monitor and repress the Venezuelan people," Faller said. On Russia, the admiral considers that he is "protecting his loyal friend by propping up the corrupt and illegitimate Maduro regime with loans, technical and military support."

     In Faller's opinion, "Russia and China are erasing the lines of what constitutes a 'military threat' through economic coercion, systematic theft of technology, influence campaigns and malicious cyber activity." Finally, the head of the Southern Command assured that "Security cooperation is our best tool to continue building on these solid partnerships and turn the challenges of our hemisphere into opportunities. We also need the correct, focused and consistent military presence. " #SOUTHCOM Commander Adm. Craig Faller #SASC testimony: “Criminal organizations, narco-trafficking, illegal immigration, violent extremists, corruption, all enabled by weak governance, are principal among” security challenges in #LatinAmerica, #Caribbean. #EnduringPromise


    CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --    The president in charge of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, during an interview for EVTV Miamiante journalists Leopoldo Castillo and Sheina Chang, ruled that he does not trust the "good faith" of Nicolás Maduro's regime during the political rapprochement initiated on Monday, July 8 in Barbados .

      "We do not believe in the good faith of the regime or any dictator. Not much less in the good faith of those who mocked the Venezuelans in 2017, "said Guaidó after commenting that the meeting in Barbados, under the guidance of the Kingdom of Norway," is just another mechanism within a global strategy. " On the other hand, Guaidó mentioned the "good meeting" he had with Enrique Iglesias, special envoy of the European Union (EU) in Caracas. "There were even sanctions from Europe, which have to do with the derivation of Michelle Bachelet's report," he said.

      The president in charge warned that "the regime will try to look for ups and downs, will try to generate distrust internally and we, naturally (...) have the experience of the Dominican Republic where there was no agreement." Regarding Maduro's departure from Miraflores Palace, Guaidó admitted: "I know it's too late for many (...), for the 271 murdered in protests it's too late." However, the leader of the transition believes that "we are on time to save Venezuela, we are on time to recover our country, we are on time to recover our spirit."


   WASHINGTON, D.C.    -- U.S. national security adviser John Bolton on Tuesday singled out three senior aides to Venezuelan DICTATOR Nicolas Maduro who he said must make good on commitments they purportedly made to the opposition for a peaceful transition away from Maduro’s rule. Speaking at the White House during a day of anti-government protests in Venezuela, Bolton named Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino, Supreme Court chief judge Maikel Moreno and presidential guard commander Ivan Rafael Hernandez Dala as having told the opposition that Maduro needed to give up power to opposition leader Juan Guaido.

     Bolton offered no evidence that three of Maduro’s top loyalists had expressed a willingness to turn against the socialist president, except to say the opposition had kept the Trump administration well informed about their discussions. “It’s still very important for three figures in the Maduro regime who have been talking to the opposition over these last three months to make good on their commitment to achieve the peaceful transition of power from the Maduro clique to interim president Juan Guaido,” Bolton told reporters.

    “All agreed that Maduro had to go,” Bolton said. “They need to be able to act this afternoon and this evening to be able to bring other military forces to the side of the interim president.”Guaido on Tuesday made his strongest call yet to the military to help him oust Maduro, and violence broke out at anti-government protests as the country hit a new crisis point after years of political and economic chaos. Several dozen armed troops accompanying Guaido clashed with soldiers supporting Maduro at a rally outside the La Carlota air base in Caracas, but the incident fizzled out and did not appear to be part of an immediate attempt by the opposition to take power through military force.

JULY 9, 2019


       WASHINGTON, D.C.  --     U.S. President Donald Trump is warning IraniTO "better be careful" after Tehran said Sunday it was boosting uranium enrichment beyond the limits set in the 2015 nuclear deal. He did not specify to reporters any specific reactions his administration was considering, but reiterated the position that "Iran will never have a nuclear weapon." Trump made his comment hours after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted that Iran's decision will lead to "further isolation and sanctions." "Nations should restore the longstanding standard of no enrichment for Iran's nuclear program. Iran's regime with nuclear weapons would pose an even greater danger to the world," Pompeo wrote.

    Britain urged Iran to "immediately stop and reverse" all actions that are inconsistent with the agreement, under which it accepted restrictions on its nuclear program in exchange for relief from economic sanctions. France said Iran's move was a "violation" of the international pact. Reports from Iran say officials may raise the enrichment to 5% -- enough to produce fuel for nuclear power plants, but still far below the 90% needed for building a nuclear weapon. The current cap under the nuclear deal is 3.67%. But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu -- a bitter foe of Iran said "The enrichment of uranium is made for one reason and one reason only - it's for the creation of atomic bombs."

     Trump pulled the United States out of the nuclear deal last year and re-imposed sanctions on Iran, which have severely crippled the Iranian economy. Iran has dropped out of part of the nuclear agreement and had threatened to increase uranium enrichment unless the remaining signatories to the 2015 deal -- Britain, China, France, Germany, and Russia -- provide sanctions relief and more economic help. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said last week Iran was prepared to enrich "any amount that we want" beyond the 3.67% level. He further pledged to resume construction of the Arak heavy water reactor, a project Iran agreed to shut down when it signed the 2015 deal.Britain, France, Germany and the European Union said in a joint statement recently they had been "consistent and clear that our commitment to the nuclear deal depends on full compliance by Iran" and urged the Islamic Republic "to refrain from further measures that undermine" the accord. Russia and China have also objected to Iran's breaching the deal.



    BRUSSELS, BELGIUM  --    The Constituent Assembly of Venezuela must be dissolved and the powers of the original National Assembly restored as an elementary step for the return to democracy, the Inter-American Commission of Jurists (ICJ) said today, asking the international community to get involved with the creation of a commission of investigation. The parallel operation of these two legislative entities, with the first that usurps the functions of the second and acts as an instance that is above any law and control, has been a crucial element for the deterioration of the Rule of Law in that country , added the CIJ.

     "Our conclusion is that the National Constituent Assembly was created in an inappropriate manner, without attending to the popular will and in violation of the Constitution, so we recommend that it be dissolved or that a referendum on its existence be called," the secretary explained. General of the ICJ, Sam Zarifi. The jurist today presented to the press the conclusions of a report prepared by the ICJ on the situation of the rule of law in Venezuela, which offers a thorough analysis of the main acts of the Cuban constituent. The result that is shown is that each of those acts has been illegal, either because it usurps the functions of Parliament or because it directly violates the current Constitution.

     According to the analysis, Nicolás Maduro has the power to dissolve the constituent, in the same way he created it two years ago, by his own will. One of the greatest damages that the Cuban constitution has done to the country has been the dismissal of Attorney General Luisa Ortega Díaz, after he denounced his lack of legitimacy, and the appointment of Tarek William Saab, as his successor, explained the main author of the report. report, the Colombian jurist Santiago Martínez. "The situation of the judiciary in Venezuela generates a tremendous concern. It can be said that he has completely lost his independence and that the Executive has turned it into an instrument of judicial harassment, "Zarifi said. "We recommend that the international community get involved and that in the next session of the UN Human Rights Council (next September) it is agreed to create a commission of inquiry that will help to render accounts in the country," he said.


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA   -- The president of Colombia, Iván Duque, hopes that the recent report of the high commissioner of the United Nations (UN) for human rights, Michelle Bachelet, on the situation in Venezuela, allows to have evidence so that the Criminal Court International (CPI) open trial against the Executive, Nicolás Maduro.

     Duque's request was made this Saturday during his participation in the Summit of the Pacific Alliance, held in Lima (Peru), where he called Maduro a "dictator". The leader of the New Granada country recalled that it was he, before being elected president, who denounced Maduro to the ICC, in the company of 76 Colombian congressmen and 50 from Chile. "At that time, when we filed the complaint against Nicolás Maduro, we showed these facts. We show the abuses of a satrap of a dictatorial regime that has no contemplation to silence the voices of anyone who challenges him, "Duque added.

      On July 1 began in Lima, the XIV Pacific Alliance Summit that concludes this Saturday, composed of Peru, Colombia, Mexico and Chile and was created in 2011.  This Thursday, July 4, the report of the high commissioner was published, after her visit to the country between June 19 and 21, where she reported that in the last year and a half, an estimated 7,000 people were killed in cases of "resistance" to the authority "and that the Government of Maduro is" committing serious violations of the human rights of the Venezuelan people. "

JULY 8, 2019


       CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --     The president in charge of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, spoke on his Twitter account to indicate that the National Assembly (AN) will approve Venezuela's incorporation of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (Tiar) in the second debate, and responsible for "the actions he will lead". "There is no longer room for doubt, it was very clear to the world that Venezuela is experiencing a dictatorship.

      For that reason, I assume my responsibility in the actions that we are going to lead in all the mechanisms that we are exercising, as part of a single strategy, to conquer the change, "he said. Guaidó informs that he will continue advancing "in all areas of struggle", with the capacity to build international alliances that allow "to protect and defend the people and our sovereignty." In view of this, he informs that "by complying with the required steps", the NA will approve the Tiar, and that after it has been approved, "we will have to build the support of the other countries of the region for this mechanism whose final approval will be made in the Organization of the States. Americans (OAS) ".

     "The transition is irreversible," said the Venezuelan parliament's president, who commented that "both the Tiar and the other mechanisms we will use will require increasing internal and external pressure," he said. Recall that this treaty provides for military cooperation between countries to ensure peace in a country that has been threatened or when the internal conflicts of a country endanger the peace of the continent, and it will not depend on the Organization of Nations United Nations (UN) or the Permanent Council of the commission, but for the approval of the OAS.


    CARACAS, VENEZUELA  --     "We are going to conduct military exercises for the defense of the Caribbean Sea, of the Venezuelan coasts and of the border," ANNOUNCED dictator Nicolás Maduro. The dictator declared on Friday that on July 24 there will be military exercises at the border to "put to the test" national defense plans, between "calls for intervention and war." "We are going to conduct military exercises for the defense of the Caribbean Sea, of the Venezuelan coasts and of the border," said the dictator during the traditional military parade in Caracas to commemorate the proclamation of Venezuela's independence. Maduro clarified that the activity seeks to "keep oiled" the "machinery" of the Armed Forces to achieve peace, reiterating complaints about destabilizing plans. The socialist ruler accuses Washington, which does not rule out a military option in the face of the Venezuelan crisis, to seek his overthrow.

      "Enough of conspiracies, (...) plans to destabilize and harm Venezuela, (...) calls of military intervention and war," exclaimed the socialist dictator surrounded by the high command that is considered his main support. Hours before, the chief of operations of the Armed Forces, Admiral Remigio Ceballos, denounced a "constant siege of exploration" and "electronic intelligence" of the United States near the border and in air and maritime areas under the jurisdiction of Venezuela. So far in 2019, according to Ceballos, "more than 70 incursions into the assigned area of flight control, constantly exploring telecommunications" were detected at the border.

     There was presence of "air and naval means" in the exclusive economic zone of the oil country, outlined from the ruling Constituent Assembly, which rules the country with plenipotentiary powers. The Donald Trump administration has issued a battery of sanctions against Venezuelan officials, former officials and entities, including an oil embargo launched in April. The United States is the main ally of opposition leader Juan Guaidó, a parliamentary leader recognized as president in charge of Venezuela by more than fifty countries, who says he seeks to expel Maduro from power to install a transitional government that will call for free elections.


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --   Between May of 2017 and May of 2019, the National Bolivarian Police and its Special Actions Force were responsible for at least 693 murders according to the data collected by the Victims' Monitor, a data journalist initiative that analyzes the issue of Violence in Caracas. This is what reported. This figure confirms what was stated in the report on Venezuela that was presented last Friday, July 5, by the United Nations High Commissioner, Michelle Bachelet, in which it is recommended the dissolution of the FAES and investigate its extrajudicial executions in which officials would be implicated.

      The report also highlights another important fact, that five thousand 287 people lost their lives in alleged clashes with security agencies last year, a figure that worried the high commissioner of the United Nations. In this regard, the criminologist and university professor Keymer Ávila highlights the high level of lethality that the Venezuelan police forces have and that represent 70% of the police executions committed in the country. "Focusing the discussion on the facts committed by the FAES, could hide the bulk of the crimes perpetrated by the police, because through the report we are referring only to 30% of deaths."

     In other words, most of the murders committed by the CICPC, GNB, municipal and state police were being made invisible. Ávila added that with the inclusion of the five thousand 287 victims of police violence, in the last eight years a total of 23 thousand 688 people died at the hands of the police agencies. On the recommendation of the dissolution of the FAES, he said that not only that was necessary "we must reform all the Venezuelan police, we must create control and supervision mechanisms, the Ombudsman's Office, the Public Ministry, the courts, NGOs, citizens, we must all work in the sense of controlling violence in the Venezuelan society. "

JULY 5, 2019


       WASHINGTON, D.C. --       The report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, detailed the gradual militarization of the institutions of the regime during the recent years after having interviews with a wide range of political figures, from Nicolás Maduro and other senior officials of the regime, even the president in charge of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, as well as with members of the civil society, businessmen, professors and other interested parties, and also with victims and their relatives in their recent visit. In the period covered by the report, both civilian and military forces are attributed the responsibility for arbitrary arrests, mistreatment and torture of critics of the regime and their families, sexual and gender-based violence perpetrated during periods of detention and visits, and excessive use of force during demonstrations.

     The well-known collectives have contributed to the deterioration of the situation, by imposing social control and helping to repress the demonstrations. The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has documented 66 deaths during the protests carried out from January to May 2019, of which 52 are attributable to the regime's security forces or to the collectives. The proportion of alleged extrajudicial executions committed by the security forces, in particular by the Special Action Forces (FAES), in the context of police operations has been surprisingly high, according to the report. In 2018 the regime registered 5,287 deaths, allegedly due to "resistance to authority", in the course of those operations.

    Between January 1 and May 19 of this year, another 1,569 people were killed, according to the statistics of the regime itself. Other sources suggest that the figures could be much higher. The report also indicates that, as of May 31, 2019, there were 793 people arbitrarily deprived of their liberty, including 58 women, and so far this year 22 deputies of the National Assembly, including its President, have been stripped of their parliamentary immunity. Bachelet called on Maduro officials to release all persons detained or deprived of their liberty for peacefully exercising their fundamental rights. The report emphasizes that the majority of victims of human rights violations have not had real access to justice or adequate reparation.


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --      The High Commissioner for Human Rights in the Organization of the United Nations (UN), Michelle Bachelet, will present the report on the situation in this issue in Venezuela, next Friday, July 5. The report tells how the regime of Nicolas Maduro has violated fundamental rights that deepened the humanitarian crisis in the Caribbean country and has deprived the population of fundamental rights regarding nutrition and medical care, among others "the State fails to comply with its obligation to guarantee the rights to food and health care "and clarifies that Venezuela's economy was in crisis long before sanctions were imposed on some of its sectors. Although it is claimed that the latest economic sanctions linked to the export of oil are further aggravating the effects of the crisis. The growing scarcity of food and its increasingly high price have resulted in a lower number of foods with less nutritional value, high rates of malnutrition and a particularly adverse impact on women, some of which reported that, on average, They spent 10 hours a day in queues to buy food. Although the Government has made efforts to address this situation through social programs, large sections of the population lack access to food distribution and the persons interviewed accused the authorities of excluding them because they were not supporters of the Government.

     The country's health situation is serious: hospitals lack personnel, supplies, medicines and electricity to keep the equipment running. The report cites the National Survey on Hospitals of 2019, which concluded that, from November 2018 to February 2019, there were 1,557 deaths in hospitals due to lack of supplies. The report also clarifies the disproportionate impact of the humanitarian situation on the indigenous population and how these people lose control of their lands for various reasons, including the presence of military forces, gangs of criminals and armed groups. "The extraction of minerals, especially in the states of Amazonas and Bolívar, ... has led to violations of various collective rights, including the rights to maintain customs, traditional livelihoods and a spiritual relationship with their land," says the document.

     The report makes a set of recommendations addressed to the Government in relation to the main human rights violations documented by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
"I sincerely hope that the authorities will carefully examine all the information contained in this document and implement their recommendations. We should all agree that all Venezuelans deserve a better life, without fear and with access to adequate food, water, healthcare and housing, as well as other basic needs, "said Bachelet. "A Catholic priest told me in Caracas: 'It's not about politics, it's about the suffering of the people.' This report also does not deal with politics, geopolitics, international relations or anything else other than the human rights to which every Venezuelan is entitled. " "I urge all people with power and influence - both in Venezuela and in the rest of the world - to collaborate and make the necessary commitments to solve this crisis that is devastating everything. My Office is ready to continue supporting. "


    WASHINGTON, D.C. --        The report also indicates that, as of May 31, 2019, there were 793 persons arbitrarily deprived of their liberty, including 58 women, and so far this year 22 deputies of the National Assembly, including its President, have been stripped of their parliamentary immunity. While the High Commissioner welcomed the recent release of 62 political prisoners, she also called on the authorities to release all other persons detained or deprived of their liberty for peacefully exercising their fundamental rights.

       The report emphasizes that the majority of victims of human rights violations have not had real access to justice or adequate reparation. "According to the interviewees, there are few people who file complaints, for fear of reprisals or lack of confidence in the judicial system," the report states. Those who do, mostly women, face omnipresent obstacles and, in most cases, research that stagnates. "T

    The Public Ministry has regularly failed to comply with its obligation to investigate and bring to justice the persons responsible for the events and the Ombudsman has kept silent about human rights violations." The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) that the Public Prosecutor's Office knows of 72 cases for alleged torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, to the detriment of 174 persons deprived of liberty in the context of demonstrations carried out between the years 2017 and 2019.

JULY 4, 2019


       WASHINGTON, D.C. --      The interim president of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, announced in the National Assembly on March 11, 2019 that he will suspend oil shipments to Cuba with immediate effect. The US government on Wednesday sanctioned Cuba's main oil importing company, in another attempt to pressure the island's government to stop backing Nicolás Maduro's regime in Venezuela. The Treasury Department on Wednesday included the state-owned company Cubametales on the blacklist of its Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which in essence freezes any assets it may have under US jurisdiction. Cubametales is the main importer and exporter of metals and fuels on the island.

     The measure aims to make it difficult to deliver Venezuelan oil to Havana at subsidized prices. The prices are part of a still valid agreement signed by the ex-presidents, already deceased, Hugo Chávez and Fidel Castro, at the beginning of 2000. According to the US authorities, the oil sent by Maduro to Cuba is the payment for the Cuban intelligence and repression services that operate in Venezuela and help the ruler stay in power. "Maduro clings to Cuba to stay in power, buying military and intelligence operatives in exchange for oil," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement. "Treasury sanctions against Cubametales will interrupt Maduro's attempts to use Venezuela's oil as a negotiating tool to help his supporters buy protection from Cuba and other malign foreign actors."

     The US government, like 50 other nations, does not recognize Maduro as the legitimate president of Venezuela, but rather Juan Guaidó, the president of the National Assembly, who was sworn in as interim president, in compliance with the Constitution once power The legislature declared that the Chavez leader was usurping power. The United States has already sanctioned Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA as well as several companies and ships that have participated in the shipments. Even so, and despite the severe fall in oil production, and the severe shortage of fuel in Venezuela, Maduro continues to send oil to the island, whose government is its main ally in the region.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA    --     Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido said on Friday that the opposition does not currently plan to join a new round of talks in Norway with representatives of President Nicolas Maduro, after mediation efforts collapsed last month without a deal. Talks seeking a political accord for the crisis-stricken nation fell apart on May 29, as opposition delegates repeated calls for President Nicolas Maduro to step down and allow a transitional government to organize a new presidential vote. Guaido in January assumed a rival interim presidency, citing Venezuela’s constitution, and denounced Maduro’s government as illegitimate after he secured re-election last year in a vote widely criticized as rigged.

      During a rally in the central city of Valencia, Guaido said that more talks are “not on the table today. Why not? Because if anything that does not move us toward (Maduro’s resignation) is useless.” Venezuela’s information ministry did not immediately reply to a request for comment. Economic collapse has driven more than 3 million Venezuelans abroad since 2015, while political protests have often turned deadly.Intelligence agents have detained several Guaido allies and the Supreme Court last month accused 14 opposition lawmakers of crimes including treason and conspiracy.

     Norway has a long tradition of conflict mediation, including helping negotiate of a peace agreement in Colombia that lead to demobilization of the FARC guerrilla group. But hopes for the Venezuela talks have been low since they were first unveiled last month. The opposition has lost faith in dialogue with Maduro’s government following meetings in 2016 and 2018 that ended in bitter recriminations and no agreements.


   NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK       -- A joint statement from 52 countries, represented by Peru, today asked the Human Rights Council of the United Nations for political changes in Venezuela so that the country "regain full enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms." "It will only be achieved through a peaceful political solution, including the holding of free and fair presidential elections under the constitution and international law," said the statement, read by the Peruvian ambassador to the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva, Silvia Elena Alfaro Espinosa.

     The diplomat said that the fifty or so signatory countries "are concerned about the serious violations and abuses of human rights in Venezuela," according to the communiqué found by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, during her visit to the Latin American country in June. "She was able to hear testimonies about torture in detention centers, arrests of people for exercising their civil and political rights, violence at the hands of the security forces, impunity and lack of guarantees of access to justice," the document added.

      It is also reported the aggravation of the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, with more than four million people (10 percent of the national population) being forced to leave the country, an exodus that accelerated last June, with about 8,000 daily departures from the territory. It also reported "the precariousness of the right to health, the shortage of medicines and equipment, the exodus of professionals from the sector, the deterioration of water quality and services, and frequent blackouts that contribute to the critical situation." This has caused, among other problems, that "diseases that once were considered eradicated in the region have reappeared due to the collapse of the Venezuelan health system", as is the case of malaria.

JULY 3, 2019


       WASHINGTON, D.C. --     Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday promised "unwavering" support to Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó as he prepares a new rally that seeks the ouster of President Nicolás Maduro. Pompeo expressed "the unwavering support of the United States to Guaidó, the National Assembly and the Venezuelan people in their attempt to regain freedom and prosperity," State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said. Pompeo communicated by telephone with Guaidó, leader of the National Assembly dominated by the opposition, days of the celebration of the independence of Venezuela on July 5, when the Venezuelan politician plans a new demonstration.

      The rally follows the death in custody on June 29 of the captain of the Venezuelan Navy Rafael Acosta Arévalo, who had been arrested a week earlier by counterintelligence agents, accused of conspiring against the government. His lawyer said he saw him for the last time the day before his death, in a wheelchair, unable to speak and with signs of torture. A sergeant and a lieutenant of 22 and 32 years were arrested on Monday for his death, but the charge of business of the United States in Venezuela, Jimmy Story, told reporters that he doubted they had acted on their own. "Are two young members of the DGCIM (Venezuelan military counterintelligence directorate) who made the decision? I doubt it very much, "he said. "Everyone in the chain of command is responsible for what happened," he said.

     The United States along with most of the Latin American powers declared the presidency of Maduro illegitimate in January and recognized Guaidó as interim president after last year's election was widely criticized for irregularities. But Maduro has resisted the US pressure campaign, which has included sanctions on crucial Venezuelan oil exports, while still enjoying the support of Russia, China and Cuba. Guaidó tried on April 30 to expel Maduro with a mutiny of the military, but his efforts failed hours later when the military leadership remained loyal to the president. The leftist president governs a ruined economy that has caused the departure of millions of its citizens from Venezuela, while basic goods and medicines have been left out of the reach of the majority of the population.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.    --    The murder of Corvette Captain Rafael Acosta Arévalo, tortured by the Chavez regime, unleashed a new wave of international repudiation against the forces of Nicolás Maduro. For the US government, it is a new sample of the modus operandi of the dictatorship. "It is the greatest evidence that Maduro will continue to kill his people and lie to the world to stay in power," condemned James Story, in charge of business in Venezuela, at a press conference in which participated Infobae.

      "You have to look at the facts, the face you showed the world. It is not a matter of ideology, but of morality, "he added, also recalling that the arrest of the military took place while in the country Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in a visit in which the political prisoners were one of the main axes. Michelle Bachelet was in Venezuela when Acosta was arrested. Days later, the captain died tortured (EFE) Story, who was the highest US diplomat in the country, stressed that this is not the first time the regime uses violence against detainees of the opposition, referring to the case of the councilor Fernando Albán, who died during his detention at the Sebin headquarters.

     "Bachelet's role as head of HR is to give voice to people who have no voice. The regime showed its face again, "he said. On the accusation launched by John Bolton, Donald Trump's security adviser, who referred to the participation of "Cuban advisors" in the crime, he said: "We know that the only reason Maduro is still in power is because he has Cubans and other countries supporting him. They are with their security and involved with the military and intelligence forces. They are the ones who are acting with impunity in Venezuela. " In addition, he stressed that Venezuela continues to send oil to Havana: "The regime is sending 100 thousand barrels per day. This shipment, when there is no gasoline in Venezuela, is an existential issue for Cuba. They are robbing the Venezuelan people. "


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA       -- The Maduro regime depends to a large extent on oil, which represents 95% of all Venezuelan exports. Oil also goes to Cuba, which provides agents that protect the president and provide him with key intelligence, according to US officials. While Venezuela reduced supplies to almost all its allies in the Caribbean, Cuba continues to receive at least three shipments of oil per month.

     The ships that go to Cuba turn off their transponders and navigate the Caribbean under the radar to avoid detection by the US government, according to shipping reports and ship tracking data. China and Russia also continue to receive oil in payment of old debts. Oil production has fallen from a maximum of 3.71 million barrels per day to 741,000, since the country has descended to a dystopia of violent crimes and hunger, 4 million have gone and international concern has increased.

     The United States has led a group of more than 50 countries to recognize Juan Guaidó, the leader of the National Assembly, as the legitimate interim president as part of efforts to put Maduro aside. But Maduro still appears firmly in control. "We are aware that companies buy and sell Venezuelan oil despite US sanctions," José Ignacio Hernández, special prosecutor of the interim government, said in an interview in New York. "Maduro is using the support it is getting from companies that conduct transactions with Venezuelan oil to buy the loyalty of companies and countries, including Cuba," he said.

JULY 2, 2019


       WASHINGTON, D.C. --     -- After the murder of Captain Rafael Acosta Arévalo, which occurred before his presentation in court, was made public, representatives of the Government of the United States have condemned what happened, considering that "he died in the custody of maturo bullies". This was pointed out by Kimberly Breier, undersecretary for the State Department of Western Hemisphere Affairs in the United States, who also urged to "restore" "democracy" in the Latin country.

     The USA condemns the death of Rafael Acosta Arévalo; He died in the custody of Maduro's thugs and his Cuban advisers. Maduro continues killing, stealing and lying to cling to power. We support the #Venezuela people in their struggle to restore democracy. Regarding the death of the captain, lawyer Alonso Medina Roa affirmed that he died "being innocent", because he was not proven to be really guilty and stated that "he was perfect before his arrest, and when he arrived at the court, he did not have no motor ability. "

     In an official statement issued by the State Department yesterday, it states that "this last act of Maduro barbarism must move us to action" and that the US "calls on the world's democracies to join in the condemnation of this recent violation of human rights and in applying pressure to hold the aggressors to account. ""This irrational murder is more evidence that Maduro will continue to kill his people, stealing from the Venezuelan nation and lying to the world in order to stay in the Miraflores Palace." Let us unite in support of the people of Venezuela in their search for an immediate end to These atrocious acts and the restoration of their democracy, "reads the letter in repudiation of the death of Acosta Arévalo.


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA     --    FARC leader “Jesus Santrich,” who disappeared on Sunday, “wants to evade justice,” Colombia’s President Ivan Duque said Monday. According to the president, the FARC leader is trying to evade his trial before the Supreme Court that is investigating a US drug trafficking claim after the war crimes tribunal rejected an extradition request due to a lack of evidence. Santrich is wanted for extradition for the crime of drug trafficking… He has been called to appear before the Supreme Court… To see a person with such characteristics abandon his security detail… demonstrates his desire to evade justice.

     The president did not go into claims made by people close to Santrich, who said the former guerrilla ideologue fled to Venezuela after hearing about a plot to either assassinate or kidnap him. Before the war crimes tribunal ruled there was no evidence that would merit his extradition and the Supreme Court ordered his release, the FARC leader spent more than a year in jail on the so-far unsubstantiated drug trafficking charge. I hope that this man will appear before justice to which he has been called, which has been decided by the high courts, but if he intends to evade Colombian justice and mock it, we will make sure the rule of law is respected.

     The president evading mentioning Santrich’s obligations with the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP) that is investigating war crimes committed by the FARC and the military while they were at war between 1964 and 2016. Following his release from jail, the FARC leader was sworn in as Congressman as initially planned for August last year. Santrich on multiple occasions vowed that he would comply with justice. Both he and the FARC have said the DEA claim supporting the US extradition request was a “set-up.” He disappeared on Sunday, however, amid rumors about an impending attempt to either assassinate or kidnap him to extradite him illegally. The FARC’s political party warned Santrich to not violate agreements made as part of the 2016 peace deal.


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA       --  Álvaro Uribe Vélez, president of Colombia between 2002 and 2010, suffered 17 attempts against his life.. "I am a miracle survivor," he observes. The eternal target of the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) and the ELN (Ejercito de Liberación Nacional), still does not give his approval to the complex peace process imposed by Juan Manuel Santos, his former defense minister and successor in the Presidency. "As Hugo Chávez and Evo Morales called a referendum, they lost it and did not respect the result," he observes. This is what abc.published.

     It is clear that the outcome of Venezuela is "a decision of the Armed Forces to depose Maduro and the regime" to make way for a "transitional government with Juan Guaidó as interim president and free and transparent elections." Forger of new "leaders", the current senator finds in Iván Duque his best pupil: "He is a man of integrity. Recovered confidence in Colombia. Spanish investments know that they can go to him to solve problems ».

     The shadow of Uribe (66 years) is as long as the number of escorts that accompany him inside and outside Colombia. Accustomed, he moves around Madrid naturally, but the scene could be used for a film shoot. The former president enters the Palace Hotel stomping, as in that summit of Unasur, August 2009 in Bariloche (Argentina), where he faced the league of leaders of Socialism Siglo XXI that headed Hugo Chavez. «Lula -he remembers- wanted the debate to be private. I told him that they were a majority and should be public. They accepted ». The sequence, live, showed the desperation of, among others, Rafael Correa and Evo Morales before the battery of arguments in the replicas of an Uribe «Carbide» that, it was learned, was flying in fever for «a type of influenza A» . Now he discovers that, hours later, Evo Morales began to have the same symptoms and had to receive medical treatment. "That did not charge me," he says with a half smile.

JULY 1st, 2019


       SEOUL, SOUYH KOREA --     --     With smiles and handshakes, President Donald Trump and North Korean ruler Kim Jong Un met on Sunday in the strongly fortified demilitarized zone between the two Koreas, and agreed to resume talks on the North Korean nuclear program. Both leaders later walked to North Korean soil and Trump then became the first American leader to step on North Korea. Both leaders posed for photographers and other media. "A wonderful meeting," Trump said after the event with the North Korean leader.

       The meeting, a rapprochement between the two nations technically at war, marked a return to face-to-face contact between leaders since the talks were interrupted during a summit in Vietnam in February. Trump said the two nations agreed to resume nuclear negotiations in the coming weeks. However, important questions remain about the future of the negotiations and North Korea's willingness to give up its nuclear weapons reserves. As he left South Korea in the direction of Washington and ended his four-day Asia tour, Trump tweeted about being the first American president to step on North Korea.

      "I was standing on the floor of North Korea, an important declaration for all and a great honor!" The president wrote. Kim praised Trump for being the first president of the United States to visit North Korea, saying it was a "brave and determined act". The meeting was held a day after the US president issued an unprecedented invitation and expressed his willingness to cross the border and hold a closed-door meeting. South Korean President Moon Jae-in praised the two leaders for "being so brave" to hold the meeting and said: "I hope President Trump will go down in history as the president who achieved peace on the peninsula. Korean ".


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA    --    Journalist Carla Angola talked with the wife of Corvette Captain Rafael Acosta Arévalo, she showed her deep pain when she realized that her family had lost a loved one for wanting to have a better country. In addition, she said he sent a message of union to the military to obtain the freedom of Venezuela. "He was a fighting man, always attached to the Constitution. Unfortunately, he did not agree with what the regime was doing and that is why they killed him. See this example so that you look in the mirror and see that it is not worthy it. They have to unite to get freedom. Everything is getting out of hand. My children are orphans now and I lost my husband, "he said.

      Perez mentioned that she talked with her husband about what they wanted for the future of the nation. "They were conversations as they all have, freedom, medicines, fear of drug trafficking, we want our children to live in a democratic country," he said. The woman said that Acosta "wanted his country and the liberation of our country always attached to the Constitution, so he died." During the interview, Waleska said that in the military barracks there is fear of revealing himself against the regime and what they could do against him. "There is a lot of fear between them. What happened to my husband, that was the intention, that the soldiers in the barracks are afraid of what might happen to them if they do something they should not "he stressed,

      Waleska talked about the time when she saw and had contact with the Corvette Captain. "On June 21, I was in contact with him and from what I saw, I could not know anything about him and I reported it to the media. They informed me that Sebin and Dgcim officials took him away. On Wednesday, during a press conference they said he was a terrorist. During his military career he never had any problems. Yesterday (Friday, June 28) he was presented in court and was very beaten, in a wheelchair. They tortured him so much that they killed him, "she explained." I knew he was being tortured. Yesterday the judge saw him in his critical condition, he was taken to the hospital in Fuerte Tiuna where he died, he was murdered. He got so many blows to the head and various parts of the body. That made him unable to resist the torture and lost his life," she added. Mrs. Pérez said that in the version that Maduro authorities published they assured that her husband had "thrown himself" into a ravine is false. They said at the press conference that he was involved in a coup d'état, that he was a terrorist and that he wanted to kill Nicolás. It's the same as always. They included in their versions that when they were capturing him he threw himself into a ravine. That's a lie. How could he throw himself down a ravine when he could not speak or get up from a wheelchair when they presented him in court and died hours later, "she concluded.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA      --  "They tortured him, they killed him, the regime killed him, they left his children orphans." Guaido said of the assassination of Corvette captain Rafael Acosta Arévalo who was arrested during the raids against officers of the Armed Forces in recent days, he died in a medical center of Fort Tiuna military barracks, according to the complaint made by his wife, as published by the press and human rights organizations. Neither the revolutionary government nor the Prosecutor's Office have officially confirmed the information, which in turn was corroborated by different organizations, such as Citizen Control for the Armed Forces and by the president in charge himself, Juan Guaidó.

     "There are no words to define this abominable fact, military family: they are not alone, there will be justice, murderous, criminal and torture dictatorship: this will not be the case," complained Guaidó through his social networks. In similar terms, Luis Almagro , secretary general of the OAS, said that "the crimes of Nicolás Maduro will not go unpunished." It would be the second political prisoner killed during his detention in the dungeons of the General Directorate of Military Counterintelligence (Sebin) or the Bolivarian Intelligence Service (Sebin), after the "suicide" of the opposition leader Fernando Albán in 2018. The body of First Justice Councilman rushed from a tenth floor, but his party and family colleagues reported that he was already dead, victim also of torture. On both intelligence bodies, there are multiple complaints of torture, included in reports by the United Nations and Amnesty International.

      "Yesterday (on Friday) he was presented (before the judge), he could not talk, he was badly beaten, in a wheelchair, he did not use himself, and so much so that he was killed. he was and they took him to the hospital in Fuerte Tiuna, and he died, he was murdered, I understand that he was beaten on the head and everywhere, he could not resist the torture, my husband died like a hero, "confirmed Waleswka Pérez , Captain Acosta's wife, for a local media from Bogotá, where she meets her two children.The first complaint came through the activist Tamara Suju , present at the OAS Assembly held in Medellin. "In the courts he did not speak, he only asked for help from his lawyer, he did not understand or listen well, he asked him to stand up but he could not move," said Suju, who the officer's lawyer confirmed to him that his client nodded to him when he was asked if he was suffering torture at the headquarters of the Dgcim.