WH in di­rect talks with Venezue­lan mil­i­tary, urg­ing de­fec­tions: re­port

US in­tro­duces draft res­o­lu­tion in UNSC call­ing for fresh pres­i­den­tial vote

The New Indian Express - - WORLD -

THE US govern­ment is in di­rect talks with key mem­bers of Venezuela’s mil­i­tary, urg­ing them to end their sup­port for the coun­try’s em­bat­tled pres­i­dent Ni­co­las Maduro, a se­nior White House of­fi­cial told Reuters. The Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion is ex­pect­ing fur­ther de­fec­tion from the mil­i­tary, a key source of strength for Maduro’s regime, ac­cord­ing to the of­fi­cial. “We be­lieve these to be those first cou­ple peb­bles be­fore we start re­ally see­ing big­ger rocks rolling down the hill,” the of­fi­cial told Reuters. Mean­while, the US on Sun­day pre­sented a draft res­o­lu­tion at the United Na­tions Se­cu­rity Coun­cil call­ing for in­ter­na­tional aid de­liv­er­ies and a pres­i­den­tial vote in Venezuela, trig­ger­ing a Rus­sian counter-pro­posal. While no date has yet been set for a vote on the Amer­i­can draft, and ne­go­ti­a­tions are on­go­ing, Rus­sia is likely to use its veto power to block it as part of its sup­port of Ni­co­las Maduro’s regime, diplo­mats said. The draft res­o­lu­tion stresses “deep con­cern with the vi­o­lence and ex­ces­sive use of force by Venezue­lan se­cu­rity forces against un­armed, peace­ful pro­test­ers.” It also “calls for the im­me­di­ate start of a po­lit­i­cal process lead­ing to free, fair and cred­i­ble pres­i­den­tial elec­tions, with in­ter­na­tional elec­toral ob­ser­va­tion, in line with Venezuela’s con­sti­tu­tion.”

AFP

Maria Florez (1) a Venezue­lan woman and Anny Man­don (2), a Colom­bian who lives in Venezuela, cry dur­ing in­ter­view with jour­nal­ists. Hit by se­vere short­ages of es­sen­tial items, hun­dreds of Venezue­lans cross bor­der ev­ery day to buy them in Colom­bia. Pres­i­dent Ni­co­las Maduro has vowed not to let in aid from the US|

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