Tehran welcomes Venezuela peace talks in Norway

May 18, 2019

TEHRAN – Tehran says it welcomes peace talks between the Venezuelan government and the opposition hosted by Norway, expressing the hope that the talks would result in a political solution.

“We hope these talks would result in a political solution between the two sides, and Venezuela could immediately improve its economy and the livelihood of its people peacefully,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said in a statement on Saturday, Tasnim reported.

Warning against the dire consequences of foreign interference in the Latin American country’s internal affairs, Mousavi said, “Unfortunately, the U.S. is collectively punishing the people of Venezuela by blocking and plundering their financial assets.”

The spokesman said it is necessary that the U.S. abandon its “economic terrorism” against Venezuela and stop its “illegal behaviors” in the country “that run counter to human rights norms”.

President Nicolas Maduro said on Friday that the talks in Norway with representatives of Venezuela’s government and the opposition sought to “build a peaceful agenda”. 

According to Reuters, the representatives of each side arrived in the Nordic country this week, signaling a fresh approach to ending months of tensions that escalated after a failed uprising last month led by opposition leader Juan Guaido, who called on the military to oust Maduro.

Venezuela was thrust into a deep power struggle in January when Guaido, leader of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, invoked the constitution to assume an interim presidency, arguing Maduro’s 2018 re-election was illegitimate.

Shortly after Guaido took an oath swearing himself in before his supporters, U.S. President Donald Trump recognized him as the country's leader. In response, President Maduro broke off diplomatic ties with the U.S. and expelled American diplomats from his country.

MH/PA

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