Venezuela: OAS backs democratic institutions

The “golpista” mentality which has swept the streets of Caracas in recent weeks has been criticised by the Organisation of American States, which has called for respect for the country’s democratically-elected institutions, which includes the presidency.

The Secretary-General of the OAS, Cesar Gaviria, is in Caracas to continue talks so as to try to find a solution to the crisis. The 35 member nations entrust him to negotiate a peaceful settlement as soon as possible and “respecting the constitutional order” of the country. The organisation calls on Chavez and the opposition to hold “negotiations in good faith and to arrive at a constitutional, democratic, pacific solution”.

Meanwhile, Venezuela’s strike enters its third week amid claims from the opposition for the resignation of Hugo Chavez, who in turn states that the Opposition are conducting a campaign which they hope will lead to a coup d’etat, as happened last April, instigated by foreign powers (the USA), eyeing the huge oil exports of the country, whose oil production is nationalised.

Indeed, last Friday the USA called on Caracas to hold early elections “so that the will of the people can be heard”, in the words of White House spokesperson Ari Fleischer. President Hugo Chavez Frias was democratically elected in July, 2000 with 60% of the vote and the next presidential elections, under the Venezuelan constitution will be in 2006.


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