Caracas, Apr 10 (EFE).- Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday was in New York to call on the United Nations to recognize Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s president and to revoke the credentials of the ambassador of the Nicolas Maduro government to the international organization.
“With all due respect, Mr. Ambassador, you shouldn’t be here. You should return to Venezuela and tell Nicolas Maduro that his time is up. It’s time for him to go,” said Pence to Venezuela’s UN representative, Samuel Moncada, during a Security Council meeting.
The US vice president traveled to New York to continue increasing the diplomatic pressure on the Chavista government, in this case before the UN, where Washington called a meeting to analyze the humanitarian situation in Venezuela.
“The time has come for the United Nations to recognize Interim President Juan Guaido as the legitimate President of Venezuela and seat his representative in this body,” said Pence.
The US was the first country of more than 50 nations to recognize Guaido and wants the UN to revoke the credentials of Maduro’s envoys and allow Guaido to be the one to name an ambassador to represent Venezuela before the international body.
Pence announced that the US delegation is working on a resolution to that end, although diplomatic sources say that the initiative will encounter rough going.
In the Security Council, Russia and China – both of whom have veto power on all resolutions – continue to back Maduro, while in the General Assembly, where all 193 member states are seated, Washington would have to convince the more than 120 countries who have not recognized Guaido.
The move comes after on Tuesday the Organization of American States recognized an emissary from Guaido, Gustavo Tarre, until elections can be held in Venezuela, thought the Maduro government says that Venezuela will leave the OAS effective April 27.
Pence said that the US “will continue to exert all diplomatic and economic pressure to bring about a peaceful transition to democracy in Venezuela. But all options are on the table,” the latter remark evidently an allusion to the possibility of military force.
According to Washington, Venezuela is a “failed state” that poses a “threat” to the entire region for assorted reasons including the massive exodus of citizens that the country’s internal crisis has caused.
Pence also said that “drug traffickers, criminal gangs, even terrorists like Hezbollah, are exploiting the chaos in Venezuela to gain a foothold in the region and export crime and violence. Were we to let the crisis continue, the chaos and suffering will only spread.”
Therefore, he said that the UN, and specifically the Security Council, must act to guarantee peace and stability and to help the Venezuelan people.
In response, Moncada said that all US actions are aimed at “imposing a government subordinate” to Washington’s interests in Venezuela.
That accusation was also made by Russia’s envoy to the UN, Vasily Nebenzia, who said that the only thing Washington is interested in is regime change so that a puppet leader can be installed in Caracas to protect US geostrategic interests.
Nebenzia said the United States “has artificially provoked a crisis in this country in order to overthrow a legitimately elected leader and replace him with their own pawn.”
“If you want to make America great again, and we’re all sincerely interested in seeing that, stop interfering in the affairs of other states,” said the Russian representative, referring to the slogan used by US President Donald Trump.
Nebenzia said that the humanitarian situation in Venezuela is merely a pretext being used by the US.
According to figures provided by the UN’s humanitarian director, Mark Lowcock, some seven million Venezuelans, about 25 percent of the country’s population, need some sort of humanitarian help.
Meanwhile, in Caracas, Guaido, who has been recognized as the country’s leader by more than 50 nations, said Wednesday that “never again” will the opposition engage in “false dialogues” with the government of Nicolas Maduro, who he contends has “usurped” the presidency.
“We Venezuelans are not offering ourselves for any false dialogue,” said Guaido during a protest in eastern Caracas favoring the efforts that Western Hemisphere and European countries have made to find a solution to the Venezuelan crisis via dialogue.
The opposition leader added that a route had been “very clearly” drawn toward achieving a solution to Venezuela’s crisis and he noted that that route includes “ending the usurpation” by Maduro, the establishment of a transition government and the holding of “free” elections.
“Any multilateral organization, entity, envoy or country who wants to cooperate to end the usurpation, (set up) a transition government and (hold) free elections, welcome; but never again any false dialogues. Never again,” he emphasized.
To deal with the Venezuelan conflict, both the European Union and certain Latin American countries have created mechanisms to try and find common ground among the parties and reach a solution.
Specifically, the EU created the so-called Contact Group – comprised of Spain, Germany, France and five other nations in the European bloc, while Mexico, Uruguay, Bolivia and the Caribbean Community (Caricom) set up the Montevideo Mechanism.
On Monday, the EU met to discuss the progress of the Contact Group and later announced that it will accelerate its diplomatic efforts to find a solution to the political crisis in Venezuela but did not rule out sanctioning Venezuelan authorities if it finds them responsible for violence.
Meanwhile, Maduro on Saturday called on the members of the Montevideo Mechanism to “retake” the initiative to push forward with political dialogue in his country.