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O vice-presidente do Brasil, Hamilton Mourão, fala à imprensa após reunião do Grupo Lima em Bogotá, Colômbia. Luisa Gonzalez/Reuters/Direitos reservados

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Brazil vice-president advocates peaceful solution to Venezuelan crisis

Mourão ruled out a possible intervention in the neighboring country

Published in 25/02/2019 - 18:48

By Agência Brasil Brasília

In an address delivered today (Feb 25) at a Lima Group meeting in Colombia, Brazil’s vice-President Hamilton Mourão ruled out the possibility of an intervention in Venezuela. A peaceful solution must be sought, he said, for “democratic co-existence in the Americas, with no extreme measures.” However, he argued for the economic sanctions to the government of Nicolás Maduro.

Mourão advocated seeking “sanctions at international forums” so that “international law prevails.” He did not specify which measures may be adopted.

Foto oficial da reunião do Grupo Lima em Bogotá, Colômbia.
Official photo of the Lima Group meeting in Bogotá, Colômbia – Luisa Gonzalez / Reuters / Rights reserved

What Venezuela has been through under Maduro, the Brazilian vice-president went on to say, contravenes democratic and liberty principles. “A regime of privileges, discrimination, and violence has set in in [national capital] Caracas which does not respect the most elementary conditions of democratic rule of law,” he pointed out.

Risks

Mourão mentioned the risks of Maduro’s administration for the region and reiterated the need for having the “[Venezuela’s] sovereign National Assembly” hold organized elections “under the scrutiny of the Organization of American States.”

He appealed for “inter-American solidarity” in the efforts to restore democracy in Venezuela and end the Chavist regime that preceded Maduro.

“Global confrontation”

Mourão expressed concern over the militarizartion of Venezuela which, “without having received a direct threat to its sovereignty and territorial representation, militarized part of its population in the form of ideology-motivated militias,” he warned.

Since 2009, Mourão added, Venezuela has bought “sophisticated military equipment with considerable capacity: combat vehicles, helicopters, fighter jets. More serious than these acquisitions, however, is the willingness of the regime in Caracas to draw actors strange to the region which may take advantage of a possible internal conflict to move board pieces of its global confrontation with the West.”

Mourão did not name the “strange actors,” but noted that the “great supporters of the Venezuelan regime are totalitarian, or authoritarian, countries, also violators of international law.”

He also rose suspicions about the involvement of Maduro’s summit members in transnational crimes.

“Venezuela has leaders involved in transnational crimes in its summit, which is the reason behind the financial resilience in a scenario prior to the collapse of the national budget and the truculence with which it rises against the political opposition and most of the population, which resists and protests against its arbitrary decisions,” Mourão said.

Meeting in Brazil

The situation in the border area between Brazil and Venezuela was discussed today (25) in Brasília by President Jair Bolsonaro, Defense Minister Fernando Azevedo e Silva, and four Armed Forces commanders.

The assembly comes after a tense weekend with conflicts in Pacaraima, Roraima state, on the Brazil–Venezuela frontier, and the thwarted attempt to send humanitarian aid to the neighboring country by the Brazilian government.

After the gathering, General Laerte de Souza Santos, head of Logistics and Mobilization with the Army, said Brazil’s humanitarian aid is still ongoing in the border region, as part of Operation Shelter (Operação Acolhida).

Translation: Fabrício Ferreira Edition: Renata Giraldi / Nádia Franco / Augusto Queiroz

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