What was expected Monday in Cancun to be the “second round” of a standing political bout came to a sudden death when Venezuela Foreign Relations Minister Delcy Rodríguez announced that her nation’s government will retire from the Organization of American States (OAS).
The announcement was made to the General Assembly which began sessions Monday morning at a press conference where she announced that Venezuela would only participate in the smaller 33-nation Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) that does not include the United States or Canada.
“Venezuela has begun a process of expansion, we have expanded the dialogue promoted by the President of the Republic to the five nations that make up CELAC,” she said.
She did not specify what five nations were part of the President Nicolás Maduro’s “expansion” but it was clear that those CELAC nations are Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua and Ecuador, that is, the nations of the bloc with socialist regimes.
“We need nothing from the OAS and we will recognize nothing” of what they might decide at during the current 47th General Assembly slated to finish on Tuesday, Delcy Rodríguez told reporters.
Rodríguez added that, “We are going to ratify and deepen our rings of integration, union and communion with CELAC. We’re going to focus our energy to receive in a humble and sovereign way those nations that are going to contribute to dialogue in Venezuela.”
After the opening ceremony the minister representing the rest of the continent gathered to make proposals for a solution in to the devastating political and economic crisis devastating Venezuela to no avail. She reaffirmed “the will of my nation” to withdraw from this organization and warned the ministers that Venezuela would not recognize any of the results that might come out of the event organized by Mexican Foreign Relations Secretary Luis Videgaray.
On the contrary, she attacked the OAS group national representatives gathered in Cancun whose aid proposals were considered by her as “inciting to violence” inside Venezuela and also warned the entire OAS that that it may be in a crumbling state.
“For the first time since this creation of this organization a nation withdraws but we know of other countries that are also considering this option,” she said. She did not specify as to what countries she was talking about.
At the General Assembly there were apparently deaf ears to the statements made by Delcy Rodríguez and continued the day’s agenda as programmed with the presentation of two different projects to approach the Venezuelan crisis.
One was the one presented by the United States and backed by 14 nations (Mexico included) demanding the suspension of the creation of a Constitutional Assembly in Venezuela which is top of the list on President Maduro’s program for the future, as well as calling for the liberation of political prisoners and the creation of an electoral schedule.
The other proposal was made by the nation pertaining to the Caribbean Community Nations (Caricom) that just proposed a call to dialogue in Venezuela and the avoidance of violence between the regime protesters, which has left thus far 78 people killed during demonstration, plus hundreds of political prisoners.
Neither of the two resolutions was approved and Mexico suggested suspending the session and continue Tuesday looking for a consensus opportunity and discuss the position stated by Venezuela of quitting OAS altogether.
Venezuelan opposition congressmen asked the OAS chancellors to meet again on Tuesday and discuss the issue again.
Meantime in Venezuela Monday, for the 80th day in a row, thousands of protesters participated in multiple demonstrations against the intention of President Nicolás Maduro of rewriting the Constitution.
Protesters even tried to march from different parts of the nation to “Take Caracas” but police blockaded all roads leading to the city.
As a final note it must be pointed out that even if Foreign Relations Minister Delcy Rodríguez calls for the withdrawal of Venezuela from the OAS, it is a move that will take as long as two years for the OAS to process and then they may not accept it as withdrawing is not an option on this American Continent organization.
But the Maduro regime’s war cry was heard loud and clear.