Venezuela: Colombia, Bolivia and Paraguay condemn expulsion of EU ambassador

The President of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, expelled on Monday the EU ambassador to the country, the Portuguese Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa, hours after the European Union sanctioned 11 Caracas officials.

The Governments of Colombia, Bolivia and Paraguay on Monday condemned the expulsion of the European Union (EU) ambassador to Venezuela, the Portuguese Isabel Brilhante, by order of President Nicolás Maduro.

“We reject the decision (…) taken by Nicolás Maduro's illegitimate regime. We continue our call to the international community to prevent tyranny in our sister country, ”said the Colombian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a publication on the social network Twitter.

For its part, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Paraguay published another message on the same social network in which it “regrets the decision of the illegal regime in Maduro to expel the EU representative in Venezuela” and which should leave the South American country in the next 72 hours.

The Government of Mario Abdo Benítez, moreover, "urges the international community to continue to work for the cessation of tyranny and to promote the return of democracy" in Venezuela.

On the other hand, the Government of Bolivia issued a brief statement also to condemn the expulsion of Brilhante.

“The Government of Bolivia condemns the expulsion (…). And it also reaffirms its support for the European Union in the multiple efforts it is making to reach a peaceful and democratic solution to the crisis in Venezuela ”, it can be read in the official note.

Politician Júlio Borges, on the other hand, representing Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó before the Lima Group, condemned “the unjust expulsion”.

“This is a new blow for the dictatorship that reflects its discomfort in the face of the issues raised by the democracies of the world. Nicolás Maduro isolated Venezuela from our neighbors and main partners, but international pressure will continue until we achieve the change that the whole country expects, ”he said on Twitter.

The opposition leader and former presidential candidate, Henrique Capriles Radonski, also expressed his "solidarity with the ambassador".

“We reject expulsion. In solidarity with the ambassador, a person who has always promoted a political and peaceful solution for Venezuelans, ”he wrote on Twitter.

For Deputy Tomás Guanipa "these actions by Nicolás Maduro reaffirm his authoritarian character and his refusal to find a way out of the crisis" in Venezuela.

According to deputy Carlos Valero, the expulsion is an “absolutely irresponsible” decision.

“The EU has been relentlessly insisting on the need to seek humanitarian aid in the midst of the (covid-19) pandemic, including organizing a donor conference. Maduro further isolates the country without thinking about the suffering of our people, ”he said.

Deputy Sandra Flores-Garzón also expressed “solidarity” with the Portuguese, “before this onslaught of the regime”.

“Ambassador, Venezuela is your home. We appreciate your and the EU's commitment to restoring democracy in my country, ”he wrote.

The President of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, expelled on Monday the EU ambassador to the country, the Portuguese Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa, hours after the European Union sanctioned 11 Caracas officials.

Maduro began by explaining that the EU issued a resolution "in which the EU supremacist sanctions those Venezuelans who, forming part of state institutions, defend the Constitution".

“Who are they to sanction, to try to impose themselves with the threat? Who are? Enough! That is why I decided to give the EU ambassador in Caracas 72 hours to leave our country and demand respect from the EU, ”said Nicolás Maduro during a television intervention.

“Enough of colonialist interventionism, 'supremacism' and racism! That's enough! ”, He emphasized.

Those sanctioned are accused of "acting against the democratic functioning of the National Assembly (parliament) and of violating parliamentary immunity" of deputies, including the opposition leader and president of that body, Juan Guaidó. The 11 sanctioned are still prohibited from moving to European space and their assets have been frozen.

Between 2008 and 2011, Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa, served as consul general of Portugal in Caracas, a period that coincided with the strong political and economic impulse of bilateral relations, promoted by the President and leader of the Bolivarian revolution, Hugo Chávez (1954) -2013), and Prime Minister of Portugal, José Sócrates.

Venezuela has, since January, two parliaments (National Assembly) partially recognized, one with an opposing majority, led by Juan Guaidó, and a pro-regime, led by Luís Parra.

The political, economic and social crisis in Venezuela has worsened since January 2019, when Juan Guaidó declared himself interim president of the country, until he removed Nicolás Maduro from power, called for a transitional government and free elections. Guaidó has the support of almost 60 countries.

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