Venezuela approves law to create a state in Essequibo

(CNN Spanish) — Venezuela’s National Assembly, controlled by the Nicolás Maduro government, unanimously approved a law this Thursday that creates the state of Guayana Esquiba, demarcated on an area disputed with Guyana, which controls the territory.

The Organic Law for the Protectorate of Essequibo establishes that “while the internal situation of the entity is resolved”, the Venezuelan head of state will elect the governor and the National Assembly will take over the legislative functions of the territory.

Article 25 of the law indicates that all candidates supporting Guyanese status for elected office may be disqualified from competing, and the following article may also be challenged in the Supreme Court.

Deputy Diosdado Cabello, vice president of the ruling Single Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), predicted this Thursday that the progress of the initiative would provoke “new attacks of imperialism against the Venezuelan people”, referring specifically to the associated prohibitions and sanctions. Hiring companies that exploit natural resources in Essequibo.

National Assembly of Venezuela.  Credit: Federico Parra/AFP via Getty Images.

National Assembly of Venezuela. (Credit: Federico Parra/AFP via Getty Images)

The approval of the law came two days after National Assembly Speaker Jorge Rodríguez proposed another legislative project to “severely” punish the country’s “traitors.” Cabello said they are already working on it.

On the other hand, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Yván Gil interviewed CIA Director William J. Mentioned Burns’ visit to Guyana.

In the text, Gill said Burns’s visit indicated that “the deployment of American intelligence poses a real threat.”

CNN has contacted the State Department for the US response to Cabello and Gil’s allegations.

In the face of conflict, Guyana says Venezuela must respect the borders set by a Paris arbitration award in 1899, which Caracas considers invalid. The United States, for its part, has expressed its support for the situation in Guyana. In December, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Washington stood by its call to the parties for a “peaceful resolution.” CNN has attempted to contact the Guyana Presidency office without receiving a response so far.

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