February 27, 2024

Maduro meets US Ambassador to Portugal Prime Minister

On the second day of attending the COP27 climate conference in Egypt, Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro spoke out against climate change this Tuesday (08), participated in a debate on Amazon security and met with Western leaders. .

Public conversations between the Venezuelan president and European and American representatives, which have become unusual in recent years due to these countries’ hostile policy toward the Savista government, have had wider ramifications, indicating efforts by Caracas and the West to ease diplomatic tensions. to each other.

Earlier, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa welcomed Maduro in one of the event’s halls. Between hugs, the Portuguese prime minister complained about inflation and “oil and gas costs”, saying “all this is a problem”.

Maduro invited Costa to Venezuela and referred to the Portuguese community living in the Caribbean nation, owner of the world’s largest oil reserves.

::What’s Happening in Venezuela::

After the fuel crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, governments and companies in Europe and the United States have shown interest in lifting sanctions to freeze relations with Venezuela and resume oil trade with the country.

In July, during the G7 summit, a representative of the French government said Paris would work to diversify fuel sources and reconnect Iranian and Venezuelan oil to the Western market.

During COP27, Maduro again received positive signals from France during his meeting with President Emmanuel Macron this Monday. “I would like us to talk a little more and start bilateral work that is beneficial to the country and the region.” The Frenchman added: “President, I will call you when all this is over”.

:: At COP27, Macron and Maduro talk about joint work and restructuring in South America::

Dialogue with America

The Venezuelan president also met John Kerry, the US special envoy for climate change, and shook hands with him for a few words. “How are you? I haven’t seen you since Cartagena,” said Maduro. The president may have been referring to his meeting with Kerry in the Colombian city of September 2016 during the signing of peace accords between the Colombian government and the former guerrilla group FARC.

The ambassador in Joe Biden’s administration and former US secretary of state during Barack Obama’s administration responded that he had promised to meet with Maduro, but “in the end, things didn’t work out.”

It was the first public meeting between Maduro and a representative of the US government in recent years. In the first months of 2022, a delegation sent by Biden visited Venezuela twice to discuss, among other topics, the resumption of fuel trade.

::US delegation visits Venezuela for 2nd time this year, Maduro talks about the following bilateral agenda::

So far at COP27, Maduro has signaled a phase of diplomatic recovery that the country wants to build to get back closer to Western powers that failed to recognize his elected government in 2018.

Additionally, the rallies tend to weaken the “interim government” formed by former congressman Juan Guaido, which has broad support from right-wing governments in Latin America, Europe and the United States.

Maduro’s own participation in COP27 also represents Caracas’ attempt to reintegrate itself into the international community. The last summit attended by the Venezuelan president was the CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) meeting, which took place in Mexico in September 2021. Prior to that, Chavista participated in the 2018 UN General Assembly.

Protect the Amazon with Colombia and Brazil

Along with the presidents of Colombia, Gustavo Pedro and Suriname, San Santos, Maduro also participated in the forum “Amazonia as a Pillar of Climate Balance and Life”. During the event, the leaders agreed to revive the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization (ACTO), which was created in 1995 by all countries that have protected areas of the forest.

This is the second meeting between Pedro and Maduro since the new Colombian president took office in August. Earlier in the month, the president was in Caracas for a bilateral meeting where the main topics were the protection of the Amazon and cooperation with South American neighbors, including Brazil.

:: At COP27, Maduro proposes South American summit with Pedro and Lula to protect Amazon::

This Tuesday, Pedro again cited the importance of the country now ruled by Lula on environmental initiatives. “It is time for the United States and South America to negotiate; we have the strength to propose something positive to the world,” he said.

In his speech during the plenary session of the conference, Maduro strongly criticized the model of capitalist accumulation, which he characterized as the main cause of climate change. “The time for talking and whining is over; there is only one person who can act actively and centrally in support of another possible world,” the president said.

Editing: Arturo Hartmann