Venezuela needs solution, not suspension

The 34-member Organization of American States (OAS) is scheduled on June 23 in Washington, the United States, to discuss the Venezuelan government’s democratic record – a possible step towards its suspension from the group.

(Soundbite) Jose Gregorio Villegas, Caracas Resident
“It is well-known that our relationship with OAS has been worsening for many years. We see that its secretary general has taken a meddlesome attitude towards us. It has not respected the Venezuelan government as it should be.”

Weeks ago, OAS secretary general Luis Almagro first proposed for regional governments to consider suspending Venezuela’s membership for jailing opponents and blocking legislation passed by the opposition-controlled National Assembly, or Congress.

(Soundbite) Luis Blanco, Caracas Resident
“I think that out of this situation, if they have to suspend us, they can do it. We Venezuelans are with the government. The government itself has us all, especially in this critical situation.”

OAS was established in April 1890 and based in Washington.
It aims to strengthen the peace and security of the American continent and guarantees to solve disputes among member countries through a peaceful way.

(Soundbite) German Valencia, Caracas Citizen
“It is not that the case now. Honestly speaking, what would OAS win, if Venezuela gets suspended? Venezuela is going through emergency and what we need is dialogue and solution. We have to resolve the critical situation that Venezuela is going through. OAS plays a very important role in this. Why not allow us more time? People do not expect miracle. The danger is that the people get tired and then there might be a debacle that nobody wants.”

While Almagro floated the intention to eject Venezuela from OAS, Venezuela’s regional allies, especially Cuba, have expressed condemnation that the proposal does not fit OAS purpose.

(Soundbite) Jose Gregorio Villegas, Caracas Resident
“There are other member countries and delegates who want to seek solutions for Venezuela through dialogue. We Venezuelans can resolve our problems (through the positive support).”

(Soundbite) Jose Antonio Egido, Sociology and Politics Analyst
“This is a serious strategy. All the international and regional harassment in OAS have fallen, because the hard position of Luis Almagro has not gone ahead. That does not mean that OAS can be effectively a land of wide victory for our government, but it does mean that the strategy of the opposition will falter. That is undeniably a political victory unexpected for us and for our President Nicolas Maduro.”

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