Government of Venezuela and Opposition Sign Agreements on Electoral Rights.
Partial Agreements Signed in Barbados Open Path to Sanctions Ease
Representatives of the national government of Venezuela reported this Tuesday that during this year they have held meetings with representatives of the United States Administration “in order to lift the economic sanctions imposed on the South American country in recent years and heal the social wounds caused by the illegitimate economic aggression.”
In all circumstances we have always sought dialogue. It has not been an easy journey but thanks to the conscience and fortitude of our heroic people, little by little we are moving forward. With the signing of these agreements we are taking the first step towards the full lifting… pic.twitter.com/zam4F3sJWr
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) October 17, 2023
As a result of this process, the Government of Venezuela and the opposition Democratic Unitary Platform (PUD) signed this Tuesday in Barbados two agreements on guarantees for the 2024 presidential elections, which include international observation, and for a joint defense of a territory of 160,000 kilometers in dispute with Guyana.
Igualmente, la firma del Acuerdo Parcial sobre la promoción de Derechos políticos y garantías electorales para todos, ratifica el fortalecimiento de una democracia inclusiva y de convivencia política que defenderá los derechos humanos sujetos a nuestra Constitución de la… pic.twitter.com/0z6yiiJZdR
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) October 18, 2023
“With these agreements, Venezuela takes another step on the path to ending the criminal unilateral coercive measures adopted against our people, and the recovery of the welfare state achieved by the Bolivarian revolution,” El Universo explains.
Likewise, according to the Government, the agreement “ratifies its commitment to dialogue and the constitutional and electoral route as the only way to resolve differences between Venezuelans, without external interference and within the framework of participatory democracy.”
Comparto la Firma del Acuerdo Parcial para la Protección de los Intereses Vitales de la Nación, bajo el amparo de la Constitución de la República Bolivariana de Venezuela, reivindicando como derechos irrenunciables la independencia, la libertad, la soberanía, la inmunidad, la… pic.twitter.com/GqkrPV0EL8
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) October 17, 2023
In the agreement on electoral guarantees, the parties commit to continuing the process of dialogue and negotiation in relation to other measures, “understanding the need for sanctions against the Venezuelan State to be lifted.”
Citing Venezuelan government data, El Universo states that “countries such as the United States, Canada, Panama and nations of the European Union (EU) have imposed more than 900 sanctions on Venezuela since 2015, most of them in their personal capacity against officials accused of harming democracy.”
“Of 926 sanctions against Venezuela, 765 were signed by Donald Trump,” stated Journalist Desiree Marbelys Rengifo González in an article published on March 9 of this year in Venezuela’s National Assembly website.
The journalist writes that eight years after the decree by the United States Government, which declared Venezuela as an unusual and extraordinary threat to the security of the U.S., the president of the National Assembly (AN), deputy Jorge Rodríguez maintains that of 926 coercive and unilateral sanctions against the nation, 765 were issued by Donald Trump.
According to Rodríguez “The development of these policies by Donald Trump against Venezuela was brutal, intensive, merciless and cruel.”
Lifting sanctions on Venezuela’s economy could help stabilize the country and eventually stem the flow of Venezuelans leaving.
“It has not been an easy journey. In all circumstances we have always sought dialogue,” said Maduro on his “X” platform. “With the signing of these agreements we are taking the first step towards the full lifting of all sanctions, the progressive recovery of social welfare, economic growth, the consolidation of peace and democracy, within the framework of full sovereignty and national independence. Long live the People! Victory!” proclaimed Maduro.
This Tuesday, the Venezuelan Government and a sector of the opposition signed two partial agreements for the presidential elections that will take place in Venezuela during 2024.
The first agreement signed corresponds to political rights and the second is framed in electoral guarantees for all sectors participating in the electoral contest.
The electoral accord acknowledged the freedom of each political entity to independently choose their presidential candidate, in compliance with their internal procedures and in line with Venezuela’s constitution and laws.
The political groups pledged to collaboratively advocate for a series of electoral safeguards with the national electoral council.
The agreement encompassed a formal request for inviting recognized technical electoral observation missions, such as the European Union, the UN Panel of Electoral Experts, the African Union, the Inter-American Union of Electoral Organizations, and the Carter Center, to oversee the presidential electoral process, ensuring strict adherence to constitutional principles, laws, and previously established agreements with the electoral authority. The agreement stated it does not infringe upon the political actors’ right to invite both national and international observers.
In the realm of public discourse, the parties committed to fostering a political and social environment conducive to a peaceful electoral process and participation free from external interference. They also concurred on taking measures to ensure the security and freedom of movement and assembly for all candidates across the nation, as well as promoting equitable access to both public and private media and national and international social networks.
The electoral guarantees for all actors establish:
-Proposal for the presidential electoral process be carried out in the second half of 2024.
-Updating the Electoral Registry.
-Establishment of registration points throughout the national territory.
-Continuation of issuance of identification cards throughout the country.
-Updating electoral registration abroad.
Likewise, all actors and public officials were urged to respect and comply with the CNE regulations during the campaign and promote the participation of all media and social networks in the coverage of the electoral campaign.
“Regarding the agenda agreed in the memorandum of understanding, the parties will continue the process of dialogue and negotiation in relation to other measures aimed at inclusive democracy and a culture of tolerance and political coexistence, as well as respect for human rights, understanding the need that the sanctions against the Venezuelan State be lifted,” reported the Venezuelan press.
Agreement to Safeguard Venezuelan Interests
The parties have come to a mutual understanding regarding the safeguarding of the nation’s critical interests and have acknowledged the necessity to shape a shared vision for the future of all Venezuelans. They have concurred to reaffirm the historical and inherent rights of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela concerning the territory of Essequiba Guiana, and to “uphold the full legitimacy of the 1966 Geneva Agreement as the legal framework that obliges the parties to work towards a practical and mutually agreeable resolution of the territorial dispute in accordance with international law.”
Furthermore, they have committed to protecting the assets and possessions of the Citgo Petroleum Corporation with the aim of preserving the essential interests and heritage of the Venezuelan populace, as well as striving to safeguard the nation’s assets abroad and uphold the territorial integrity and national sovereignty of Venezuela.
Joint Statement on Venezuela Negotiations
The U.S. State Department issued a statement on the Venezuela Negotiations in Barbados on October 17, 2023.
“We welcome the Venezuelan-led political agreement reached today in Barbados. This agreement represents a necessary step in the continuation of an inclusive dialogue process and the restoration of democracy in Venezuela.
We support a peaceful negotiated outcome that leads to fair and competitive elections and a return to economic stability and security. We continue to call for the unconditional release of all those unjustly detained, the independence of the electoral process and judicial institutions, freedom of expression including for members of the press, and respect for human and political rights.
We will work with our international partners and others to address the urgent needs of all Venezuelans inside and outside their country and to alleviate the humanitarian crisis. We are grateful to Barbados for hosting the negotiations and to Norway for its leadership in facilitating the negotiations.”
Venezuelan Opposition Candidates
VOA has reported that a total of fourteen candidates have officially enrolled for the upcoming Venezuelan opposition primary set to determine their nominee for the 2024 presidential elections. Among this diverse group are seasoned politicians, independent figures, legal experts, university professors, a veterinarian, and a businessperson vying for the opportunity.
??¿Ya sabes dónde votarás este 22 de octubre?
Ubica tu centro a través de Telegram en:https://t.co/TDOxn8Ppif
O a través de la página https://t.co/Kj9OBbjDlA
¡Esta primaria será manual, sin CNE y contaremos PAPELITO por PAPELITO! #HastaElFinal
— Vente Venezuela (@VenteVenezuela) October 17, 2023
According to VOA, the National Primary Commission concluded the registration phase for potential presidential contenders on Saturday, June 24. These candidates will face off in a manually conducted election on October 22, spanning across Venezuela and in 81 cities globally.
For added context:
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