Venezuela Continues To Block

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They are accusing Guatemala of backing out of talks to resolve the UN Security Council voting deadlock, but from the rhetoric it certainly sounds more like the only compromise Chavez will accept is the substitution of his pet regime in Bolivia. That one will not fly. Everyone knows that Bolivia is going to do Venezuela's bidding if they get the seat.

Venezuela's Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro said if talks resume his government will again propose Bolivia as a compromise nation "because it is an emerging country with a new leadership representing very well South America."

Latin American diplomats had hoped that high-level talks on Thursday between Maduro and Guatemalan Foreign Minister Gert Rosenthal could break the impasse after 41 ballots failed to produce a winner, but both countries refused to withdraw.

Guatemala has led Venezuela in all but one of the votes, where they tied, but it has been clear since the early ballots that neither can muster the needed two-thirds support in the 192-nation U.N. General Assembly.

The United States backs Guatemala, and leftist Venezuela is led by the fiercely anti-American President Hugo Chavez.

Maduro said that between Monday and Tuesday several countries were contacted as possible alternatives as agreed by the two countries. Some said no and some agreed to be considered as a possible compromise, he said.

But at Thursday's meeting "they said they were canceling all the talks and they did not recognize the agreements made on Monday and Tuesday," he told two reporters after meeting Arab nations to campaign for additional votes.

"The Foreign Ministry of Guatemala is changing its mind because they are following the signal sent by the U.S. administration," Maduro said.

Richard Grenell, spokesman for the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, rejected Maduro's claim.

"Venezuela's strategy has always been to make this about the United States. This issue is about who would serve best on the Security Council. Clearly, it is our opinion that Guatemala is the best candidate," he said.

At the end of Thursday's meeting, Guatemala's Rosenthal said Guatemala was not willing to step down.

"We still believe we have the possibility of getting enough votes to prevail," he said. "Our position is different from theirs — they don't have any chances."

It sounds as if Guatemala will not "compromise" by giving Chavez his way. Chavez again demonstrates his incompetence as a diplomat.

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One Response to Venezuela Continues To Block

  1. Jose says:

    Chavez has, so far, received the support of some of the heavy weights of South America (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay) because those countries have left-leaning administrations and they claim MercoSur “solidarity” with Venezuela. But these considerations will not extend to a possible Bolivian candidature which will, in my opinion, move Brazil from support to at least abstention to even possible opposition. (due to Evo Morales’s move against huge Brazilian oil and agricultural investments in Bolivia) and Chile, which has so far abstained on the Venezuelan election (due to Chavez building fortifications on the Bolivian/Chile border) but which will oppose Bolivia. Without Chile and Brazil in support I see little chance for a Bolivian election to the UNSC.

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