Venezuela has been on the verge of collapse for years. But now, as things have declined, more Latin American and Caribbean countries are pushing to sever ties with the country and its president Nicolas Maduro.
The Lima Group was formed in August of 2017 to handle the crisis in Venezuela. The group made up of representatives from a dozen Latin American and Caribbean countries met before the holidays to discuss what action they plan to take against Maduro’s regime.
On January 10, Maduro will be sworn in for another term.
But Maduro continues to be accused of fraud after his socialist party surprisingly won 17 out of the 23 state governorships in the country’s last regional election.
Polls prior to the election, it was predicted that the opposition would win by a landslide. Since then, Maduro has been repeatedly accused of rigging the election.
The Lima Group has agreed that Maduro won’t be recognized as Venezuela’s head of state come January 10.
Earlier in the month, Chilean Foreign Minister Roberto Ampuero referred to Maduro’s re-election as “invalid.
“The Group of Lima is working very close together, exchanging views. And we have to define the next steps,” said Ampuero. “One thing is very clear, in the case of Chile, we think Venezuela is facing a tragedy in every sense. Venezuelans are not able to express themselves politically; they have not the opportunity to choose their authorities. The international community shares these views.”
Even leaders who were once friendly with Maduro are no longer supporting him. Conservative Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro uninvited Maduro to his swearing-in in Brasilia and tweeted that “naturally, regimes who violate their people’s liberties and openly act against Brazil’s future government … will not be present.”
Venezuela used to have more allies when its oil production was booming. Today, the oil production in the country is at the low 1947 levels.
The neighboring country of Colombia hasn’t had an ambassador visit Caracas since 2017.
Peruvian Foreign Minister Nestor Popolizio said that at the Lima meeting that he planned to propose cutting diplomatic ties with the socialist country.
Although more countries are disavowing Maduro, he still is using violence to maintain the little control he has in the state.
According to a recent report by the research center CASLA Institute, there were at least 190 cases of torture on political dissidents by the state government in 2018.
Author’s note: Socialism has destroyed Venezuela. The country keeps losing “friends” without its successful oil business. There’s nothing to keep close-by countries from supporting Venezuela. So the more violent Maduro’s government gets, the more countries are cutting ties with Venezuela.