Nicolas Maduro and Juan Guaido

Venezuela: New Round of ‘Face to Face’ Talks to be Kept in Norway


Representatives from the Venezuelan government and opposition are coming back to Norway for a second round of talks targeted at easing the political standoff in Venezuela.

Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Soreide proved the new round of talks between Venezuela’s “main political actors .” It is predicted that the talks consist of face to face meetings, but no further information on their dates and content are currently known. Dialogue is supported by 81 percent of Venezuelans.

“We reiterate our commitment to continue supporting the search for an agreed-upon solution,” Soreide went on to say.

For the Venezuelan government, Communications Minister and Sectoral Vice President Jorge Rodriguez, Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza, and Miranda State Governor Hector Rodriguez all travelled to Oslo Monday.

Similarly, National Assembly Second Vice President Stalin Gonzalez, ex-Minister Fernando Martinez Mottola, ex-Mayor Gerardo Blyde, and ex Electoral Council Rector Vicente Diaz will represent the Venezuelan opposition. Everybody except Diaz and Arreaza participated in the first round of talks. Opposition spokespersons claim that Diaz is to give “technical assistance” at the dialogue.

Over the weekend, both President Maduro and self-proclaimed “Interim President” Juan Guaido commented on their expectations for the talks.

For his part, Maduro stated that he hopes that the conferences will establish “agreements” which guarantee “the peace and stability of the country,” before thanking the Norwegian government for their hard work. Maduro recently suggested holding early parliamentary elections as a way out of the present political crisis.

Some of Guaido’s supporters, such as Soy Venezuela leaders Antonio Ledezma and Maria Corina Machado, were quick to refuse his acceptance of dialogue.

Talking from Spain, former Caracas Mayor Ledezma describes the talks as “a crass error which may mean more deaths for Venezuela.”

Guaido looked to reassure his supporters, informing them that “The great difference in this process is that today we have all the tools available to achieve the change.” He also warned that those who ease the pressure on Maduro “become accomplices of the dictatorship.”

The US State Department was fast to convey concerns about the new round of talks, claiming in a statement that past negotiations had led to divisions in the opposition.

The statement added that the only problem which Guaido’s team has to discuss with Maduro’s is “the conditions of his departure.”

The European-led International Contact Group, which lately met with the government and the opposition in Caracas, also stated support for the dialogue initiative, reaffirming its “commitment to a political, peaceful and democratic solution.”


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