Colombia praises Venezuela talks between government and opposition

Posted on Apr 9 2014 - 11:13am by Rico
Maria Angela Holguin

Colombia’s Foreign Minister has praised the open nature of the dialogues between the Venezuelan government and political protesters which took place on Tuesday.

Minister Maria Angela Holguin was positive about the preliminary meeting between the Venezuelan Government and representatives of the Bureau of Democratic Unity (MUD), stating that it was a “very cordial, very respectful dialogue.”

The talks were mediated by the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) which stated a “willingness on both sides for clear dialogue, for a rejection of violence on both sides and that Venezuela end this spiral of violence which has taken place in recent weeks.”

MORE: Santos supports UNASUR efforts to improve situation in Venezuela 

Tuesday’s meeting was also attended by foreign ministers of Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia , Chile, Ecuador, Uruguay and Suriname.

“There is space for everyone in Venezuela in which all Venezuelans can live peacefully, harmoniously and I think basically at this point that is what they want to discuss. We, as foreign ministers, will put all of our efforts into these agreements being met.”

According to Holguin, the recent problems in Venezuela can only be resolved through “dialogue and diplomacy.”

Large-scale student protests have been held across Venezuela since February demonstrating against a variety of problems including government corruption and a scarcity of basic goods.

Problems escalated when the Venezuelan government responded with vicious force to the protests as well as shutting down certain foreign news stations and banning social networking sites such as twitter.

The violence which was spread across Colombia’s neighboring country has also caused problems within Colombia with border closures affecting trade.

MORE: Trade with Venezuela suffering from neighboring crises: Colombian Trade Official

However, according to Holguin, despite the positive nature of the talks, “no agreement has been made as of yet on the security issues and the problem of crime in Venezuela.”

The next meeting between the Venezuelan government and protesters is to be mediated by Foreign Ministers from Colombia, Ecuador and Brazil as well as by a representative from the Vatican.


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