Venezuela: Nicolás Maduro rejects new elections

Venezuela President Nicolás Maduro has ruled out new elections in his country for the moment. A report from the daily newspaper El Universal According to Maduro, stabilization and peace in the country are important to the people – elections are not a priority. Previously, the so-called International Contact Group for Venezuela (ICG) had demanded that the crisis be ended by a free, transparent and credible presidential election. The Contact Group includes the European Union and several Latin American countries. A first ultimatum of the EU, to set free elections, had previously ignored Maduro.

In Venezuela, there has been a power struggle for weeks between the current head of state Maduro and Juan Guaidó, who had proclaimed in January to the interim president. Meanwhile, about 40 countries have put behind Guaidó, including the United States, Germany and other EU countries as well as several South American countries. Maduro can rely on the support of the Venezuelan military.

Aid deliveries blocked

In Venezuela, there is an economic and supply crisis. There is a lack of many daily necessities as well as food and medicines. A first relief shipment from the United States had been obstructed in recent days: Maduro had blocked a bridge, which should be brought about 100 tons of supplies according to American information. Maduro said the humanitarian crisis in his country was "invented" and should justify US intervention.

Guaidó does not rule out intervention. The AFP told Guaidó that he would do "everything necessary" to save lives. The topic was however "very explosive".

Around three million people in Venezuala have already fled the situation in their country. Guaidó called on the military to let the relief supplies into the country. "Blocking the import of this aid could be considered a crime against humanity," said the opposition leader. He called on the military to change sides: it had to decide whether to "stand on the side of the constitution" or stay on the side of an "increasingly isolated dictator," Guaidó said.

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