The opponent Juan Guaido, supported by Washington and who had ruled out any dialogue with the government, called for the opening of discussions in exchange for the lifting of US sanctions. Maduro said he was ready for a dialogue.
Would a beginning of dialogue begin to be established between the Venezuelan government and the opponent Juan Guaido? A video posted on the latter’s Twitter account caught the attention of President Nicolas Maduro on May 11, who responded to him the same day and the following day in several speeches.
The former president of the National Assembly, who proclaimed himself president of the country in January 2019 and has been recognized as such by the United States and some sixty countries, had so far refused any dialogue with the government. In his video, he, for the first time, proposed discussions, with a view to establishing a timetable for “free elections”. In return, he promises the lifting of economic sanctions imposed by the United States. “Venezuela needs a national salvation agreement, an agreement that must be concluded between the democratic forces represented by the provisional government [lui-même], The national assembly [dominée par des députés socialistes favorables au gouvernement] and the international community ”, declared Juan Guaido during this unprecedented initiative.
“When they want, where they want and how they want”
Despite the manifest hostility shown by the opponent supported by Washington for more than two years, President Nicolas Maduro was not insensitive to this first openness by the opponent and responded to it the same evening on television. “Now Guaido wants to sit with me […] I agree, with the help of the European Union, the Norwegian government [médiateur dans ce dossier], with the contact group. When they want, where they want and how they want, ”said Nicolas Maduro, whose country is strangled by economic sanctions. “If he wants to join the discussions that are already underway, developing on all subjects, he is welcome to join them, but not if he believes that he is the supreme leader of a country which does not recognize him. not, ”he added.
Regional and municipal elections in Venezuela will be held on November 21, according to the National Electoral Council (CNE) on May 13. These elections will be the first since the legislative elections of 2020 and the presidential election of 2018 which saw the re-election of President Nicolas Maduro. These two ballots were boycotted by part of the opposition.
The announcement of the date of the election comes a week after the establishment of the new CNE by the National Assembly, where the government has 256 seats out of 277. Juan Guaido said he did not recognize this council, including three of the five members are in favor of power. The CNE must however organize all the polls for the next seven years, and in particular these regional coupled with municipal ones.
Venezuela, which is going through a serious crisis, must face the economic sanctions imposed in particular by the United States (first from Trump and then from Biden) which seeks to oust Nicolas Maduro from power.
Despite the total closure of any dialogue by Juan Guaido, the government negotiates regularly with other sectors of the opposition and in particular with Henrique Capriles, twice presidential candidate, increasingly isolating Juan Guaido who has become a very minority in the within the opposition because considered too radical and criticized for its support for American sanctions qualified as “criminal” by many political actors in Venezuela and internationally. Sanctions that Guaido had called for amplifying in December.
“The CNE was born out of a great dialogue with all sectors of the opposition, all sectors except one! The extremist sector, putschist, which facilitated the blows, the sanctions, the attacks, ”recalled President Maduro on 12 May. More and more isolated and without any electoral legitimacy, Juan Guaido seems to have come to the conclusion that no progress will be possible for him without discussion with the government.