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Dialogue between government and opposition of Venezuela resumes in Barbados

 Jender Milano
5 min read

In a day of much political movement, the Venezuelan people received the announcement by both the government and the opposition of the continuation of the dialogue process that began in Oslo, always promoted by Norway, in Barbados this week.

President Maduro had announced his willingness and desire to continue talks with the Venezuelan opposition. Guaidó, for his part, had shown reluctance, undoubtedly pressured by the opposition mass that accuses the government of buying time with the dialogue and asks the opposition leader for concrete and direct actions.

Dialogue between government and opposition of Venezuela resumes in Barbados

From the TIAR to Barbados in one day — The networks burn

The followers of the opposition leader who hold out hope for an immediate exit from the government of Nicolás Maduro welcomed Guaidó's announcement on the activation of the TIAR through the National Assembly. The Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance is an inter-American defense pact that some opponents believe would open the door to an intervention by countries in the region to remove the government from power.

But less than 3 hours after making said announcement and less than 24 hours after announcing that there would be no more talks with the government, Guaidó announces that an opposition delegation will travel to Barbados for another round of negotiations with the Maduro government.

As expected, the networks exploded by outraged opponents who took the double-talk or obvious contradiction between one ad and the other as a mockery, something that was clearly reflected on Twitter:

Is it possible to implement the TIAR effectively against the Maduro government?

In reality, this option does not seem viable and that is what Guaidó's defenders argue within the opposition. Many months before, both in the Lima Group and individually, all the countries in the region have rejected the use of military force against Venezuela and even President Trump has distanced himself somewhat from the military scene. Hence, some defend the theory of putting more options on the table while the dialogue continues.

The Venezuelan scenario is very complex, by all accounts the dialogue favors the government that sees the moment of the election for the National Assembly closer and if it crosses the dialogue, it would have the opposition discouraged from participating.

Elections with or without Maduro?

This is another of the most disturbing themes of the dialogue. Chavismo has taken the figure of Maduro as an unshakable point of honor for having elected him as president in 2018. The opposition argues that such elections were invalid and, being divided, many abstained from participating, facilitating the election of the current president.

From one extreme to the other, we have a sector that not only demands presidential elections, but also wants them without the candidacy of Nicolás Maduro, while at the other extreme, although as a political force they could participate with another "strong" candidate like Diosdado Cabello, they do not They accept such a thing and among the followers of Chavismo they do not accept an early call for a presidential election.

Many other issues, such as a new CNE (electoral referee), continue to be unwavering demands of the Venezuelan opposition, the road does not look easy and from what is perceived the opposition mass loses faith in Guaidó with the passage of time and this in turn does not it can invoke any intervention without other states agreeing to develop it. Today, there are many influencers, opposition journalists, who criticize the opposition leader's decisions for judging that he only "prolongs things", but there are not many real options in sight.

Political capital abroad

It is no secret to anyone that the vast majority of Venezuelan migrants who live today in Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Argentina, Chile, even the US and number in the millions, are opponents. By not having their situation regularized and largely also because they are not stimulated, it is a great political capital that the opposition would need to have for a possible presidential election.

Dialogue between government and opposition of Venezuela resumes in Barbados

Among other reasons, it is one of the reasons why a radical sector of the opposition yearns for a direct solution, even an intervention, it is perceived that the government has the upper hand due to the political system that it continues to run in the country, the public powers, his followers mobilized but until now there is no firm decision that indicates that possibility.

The fear of the opposition to an election with the current system and with the participation of Maduro is based on a message given by the Venezuelan head of state, announced several days ago on Twitter: "The dialogue continues, there will be news soon." Now his fears seem to take shape.

The Venezuelan people, both Chavistas and opponents, are waiting for some announcement that represents a real basis, a solid decision on something. A Venezuelan saying applies to the current moment: "To be hanging, it is better to fall" and that is that the endless expectation creates an atmosphere of collective stress that for some is suffocating. Now Venezuelans set their sights on Barbados... and wait.

Dialogue between government and opposition of Venezuela resumes in Barbados