CARICOM foreign ministers held meeting with Venezuela opposition


CARICOm Foreign Ministers , with Canada’s Ambassador Marie Legault, two Venezuela opposition officials and CARICOM Secretary General Irwin la Rocque at Saturday’s meeting

On Saturday CARICOM) foreign ministers met with Venezuela’s Opposition Leader and self-declared interim president Juan Guaidó in Barbados, via video conferencing.

Two members of his delegation, were however physically present in Barbados for the talks that were also attended by Canadian High Commissioner to Barbados, Marie Legault, who has a long career in international diplomacy.

CARICOm Foreign Affairs Ministers , pose for a photo with Canada’s Ambassador Marie Legault and two Venezuela opposition officials. CARICOM Secretary General Irwin la Rocque is at extreme right (CMC Photo)

She is reported to have attended the talks as a member of the Lima Group that has opposed President Nicolas Maduro’s second term as president and voted on a resolution at the Organisation of American States (OAS) to that effect in January.

St. Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, President of the Dominican Republic Danilo Medina, US President Donald Trump, Melania Trump, Jamaica Prime Minister Andre Holness, Haiti President Jovenel Moise, Bahamas Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis (Miami Herald)

At least four Caribbean countries, St. Lucia, Bahamas, Jamaica and Haiti sided with the Lima Group and last Friday met with United States President Donald Trump to further discuss the Venezuelan situation at his private residence.

Jamaica’s Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Minister Kamina Johnson Smith, her Trinidad and Tobago counterpart, Dennis Moses, as well as the CARICOM Secretary General Irwin LaRocque, and the St. Kitts-Nevis Foreign Affairs Minister Mark Brantley attended the talks.

St. Kitts-Nevis Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris is the current chairman of the 15-member regional integration grouping.

CARICOM leaders at their inter-sessional summit in St. Kitts-Nevis last month had reiterated their position of non-interference in the internal affairs of Venezuela and said they were prepared to mediate in the process to bring about a peaceful resolution to the crisis.

In a message posted on his Twitter page Guaidó, who has the backing of the United States, Canada and several other western countries in his bid to unseat President Nicolas Maduro, said the talks were mainly an opportunity for him “to express his views on the situation in Venezuela and to discuss the way forward”.

He also reiterated the “very strong relationship” between Caracas and the 15-member CARICOM grouping.

Informed sources told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) that a similar meeting is being planned with Maduro and his delegation and that the talks could take place as early as this week. No venue has yet been given for that round of discussions.

The sources said that CARICOM will issue a statement regarding the deliberations held here with Guaidó on Saturday.

Categories: Politics