Why Petro’s silence in the face of Maduro’s crackdown on the opposition?

The leaves of the calendar are falling rapidly and they are getting closer to July 28, the day when Venezuela will hold presidential elections in which, barring any surprises, Nicolás Maduro will win.

Without stopping, the regime is removing from the streets all rivals who had the option of competing with it – with prison or exile. The most recent incident was the arrest of Henry Alviérez, national coordinator of opposition leader Vente Venezuela (VV). Maria Corina Machado.

He, as if that was not enough, has been disqualified from participating Despite being selected as the opposition majority candidate in the primaries.

“World alert! The Maduro regime carried out brutal repression against my campaign teams,” he said on his X account. “These cowardly actions are aimed at closing Venezuela’s path towards peace and a transition to democracy and independence,” he said.

In view of this, the international community has, with a few exceptions, sounded alarm bells. One is the government of President Gustavo Petro which remains silent.

His silence is all the more surprising given that he has looked to Colombia for what Maduro has described as a series of alleged plots to assassinate him.

Maduro accused the opposition leader Leopoldo López and former President Álvaro Uribe Vélez accused of planning “terrorist attacks” To disrupt the economy and elections. “When those two evil terrorists meet it is to hatch a conspiracy. “Maximum alert to the entire Bolivarian National Armed Forces,” he said.

“What is happening in Venezuela is very serious. What happened to Maria Corina Machado is very serious. It is not a question of politicizing or supporting the opposition or any party. It’s about democracy, about protecting a candidate’s political participation. It’s not whether you want that person to win or not. To date, Colombia has always had a very important participation in all mechanisms of democratic promotion,” DIce Nastassja Rojas, Professor of Political Science at Javeriana University.

“Diplomacy in the international policy of any country has the ability to explain its position in relation to bilateral or multilateral situations. “Colombia’s silence in the face of Venezuela’s disgrace on democratic matters sends Colombia into the corner of the countries that promote the lack of democracy,” Says analyst Pedro Viveros.

So far, it has been said in diplomatic circles that this is a strategy of President Petro to leave no room for maneuver in looking for a way out of the crisis in Venezuela.

Viveiros believes that to the extent that Maduro intensifies repression and paves the way for re-election with a system that is not democratic, Petro is left

Very complex situation.

“There is little room left for Petro to enter as a radical critic of the Maduro regime’s position or propose a solution so that a much-battered democracy can move forward. There is no scope for action now,” he says.

Colombia’s position is also evident from its proximity to Venezuela. “From the perspective of international relations, under a realistic principle, Colombia is acting pragmatically so as not to affect bilateral relations that have improved and that have helped our country in the fight against economic, immigration and crime sectors. It’s positive,” he says. Enrique Prieto-Rios, Professor of International Law, Universidad del Rosario.

The two countries share a border of more than 2,219 kilometers and have major problems that are difficult to solve from one side without the involvement of the other: illegal armed groups, illegal mining, smuggling, among others.

“Now, from the perspective of international law and as a government that has said it is a government that respects international human rights law and they have called for Venezuela to rejoin the OAS and enter the Inter-American system. In this context, Colombia should speak out for what is happening, this is a clear violation of Inter-American Corpus Ayur In terms of civil and political rights,” says Prieto-Rios.

“The president’s silence on hardening repressive and undemocratic acts against the opposition in Venezuela could be a gambit by the government in its international relations, as it has been quick to condemn similar incidents in other states. His silence may be aimed at maintaining the confidence of Venezuela’s ruling party in the changing global scenario, where it ensures an ally on the continent,” he explains on his part, Angel Tuirán Sarmiento, analyst at Universidad del Norte.

Ambassador Murillo in trouble

On the other hand, the Chancellor in-charge has also been affected in this development. luis gilberto murillo Within a few days, a mountain of troubles fell upon him, which he probably had never even imagined.

Whoever Sergio Fajardo’s Vice-President Formula was, he was one of the best-imaged individuals in higher government. As ambassador to Washington, his prudence and management were appreciated.

As soon as he took over as suspended chancellor, Alvaro Leyva was faced with the passport issue and the signing of a contract with the company Thomas Greig & Sons, whose appointments were questioned. Armando Benedetti and Sebastián Guanuman The situation in the FAO and Chilean embassies and now with Venezuela.

Murillo said this Thursday that “Colombia is guided by the principles established at the international conference that we held in Bogotá a year ago in April, in which about 20 countries are friends of the Venezuelan solution.Where this framework was established whose basic objective is not only to eliminate sanctions against Venezuela and any country, but also to hold free, fair, competitive, transparent elections with the participation of all political forces.

Analyst Viveiros believes that “this is an opportunity for the government to take advantage of the figure of an ambassador and chancellor (e) before the successful management of relations with the United States in order to set a path that will have less condemnation There is no other option but to do it.” Raise the issue of what or “how” is happening with the Maduro regime Implementation of the Barbados Agreement.

For analyst Tuiran, in fact, “the image of the Chancellor (e) may be affected, bearing in mind that he is facing this silence internally and in his current role as Chancellor (e) and Ambassador to the United States.” Will accept the results.”

This situation occurs when Murillo has another fact that exposes him. Aid to Colombia from the United States is estimated to be cut by approximately $40 million, equivalent to a 10% reduction. they will be something 410 million dollars that will come into the countryWhile the total for the 2023 fiscal year was 456 million.

Ultimately, Professor Rosas believes a message is being sent that should be considered. ,I think this is clear from what has happened in recent months, Colombia’s silence, making migration invisible, changing the real reason for migration, which is repression and a situation deliberately established by the Venezuelan regime, to realize that The conditions that establish it are Maduro” she says of the Caracas-Bogota relationship.

In such a situation, the relationship and situation of Chancellor Murillo still exists, who was known for his discretion, but now the opposition is demanding a strong statement from him.


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