'Venezuela Suffers an Economic Massacre', President Maduro Says

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Offering an interview to journalist Erik Schatzker from the Bloomberg Agency, Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro denounced that his country is suffering an economic massacre perpetrated by the U.S government, which violates Venezuelans’ human rights.

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“We faced four years of aggressions and cruel sanctions by the Trump administration that caused damage to the Venezuelan economy. Trump left an irrational policy against Venezuela that has been questioned by Human Rights organizations. Over 80 percent of the Venezuelan population rejects the sanctions,” President Maduro noted. 

He asserted also that despite the illegal blockade, the Bolivarian nation is not isolated and has strengthened relations with its allies in the world. “The world is more than the West, the 21st century is multipolar. We aspire to rebuild relations with the U.S. elite because our relations with intellectuals and social movements in the U.S. are good”, President Maduro said.

The Venezuelan President urged his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden to stop demonizing the Bolivarian process, “hopefully we can find ways of respect and mutual benefit that will allow us to regularize relations between both countries,” he added.

“For the time being there has not been a positive sign of rapprochement, the only different thing that could be heard is the spokespersons of the White House and the State Department seeking a dialogue in the country, but it is very timid because the sanctions are still intact”, President Maduro explained.

Recalling possible rapprochements with former President Donald Trump, the Venezuelan President noted that he was close to starting a dialogue, but advisors such as Bolton exerted unimaginable pressure, “the then Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez was in Washington and met Trump’s collaborators, but the Trump method prevailed. I was about to hold a meeting with Trump in 2018, but Bolton’s pressures prevented the reunion,” he pointed out.

“In 2019 and at the end of his administration in 2020, there were contacts by the then Communication Minister Jorge Rodriguez in Mexico. They claimed that if Trump won the elections he would change the policy towards Venezuela, he was bored with Juan Guaido”, President Maduro stressed. 

Electoral guarantees in Venezuela

“In Venezuela, 26 elections have been held in 20 years, we have won 24 out of those 26 and there has been international oversight, even from the Organization of American States (OAS) in many cases. U.S. former President Jimmy Carter assured that Venezuela’s electoral system is the most transparent in the world”, President Maduro recalled.

The Bolivarian President emphasized that a process of pacification and understanding with all the political sectors has begun in the country, following the installation of the new Parliament. “There is a negotiation with all the opposition sector to extend the electoral guarantees ahead of the mega-elections of November 21…A good National Electoral Council (CNE) was elected, and they have started off on the right foot to conduct the mega-elections”, he stressed.

“The electoral guarantees to smooth transparent and reliable mega-elections will be expanded according to the political negotiation that is being carried out with all political organizations”, he added.

Regarding the international missions to monitor the national elections, the Bolivarian President reiterated that the CNE rectors were the authorities in charge of the invitations, “anyone who wants to come will be welcome”, he clarified.

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Media campaign against the nation

There is a Venezuela very different from the Venezuela shown in international media campaigns.

“Is it new that the CIA has been conspiring against Latin American countries? They have done it in Cuba, in Chile under Allende’s term, against Commander Chavez,” President Maduro stressed.

A brutal stigmatization campaign has been carried out since the triumph of the Bolivarian Revolution. “Powerful class in the world and the elites in Latin America do not agree with a consolidating process which represents an alternative to neoliberalism”, he warned. 

“Venezuela and the world have the right to commercial freedom, there cannot be a country imposing its government on another by dominating the currency and the banking system. If this is established, it would be the end of the United Nations and International Law. The U.S. must recognize that International Law exists”, President Maduro stressed.

He put as an example of the misinformation media campaign against the Bolivarian nation the situation at the border with Colombia, where Venezuela is accused of abandoning the border and even of losing territory to armed groups. “We have guaranteed that our border is free of drug cultivation and production, while Colombia is the kingdom of drugs and smuggling”, he noted.

“We have sent direct messages to the illegal armed groups and they must leave our territory, we are permanently in surveillance and military deployment. The best scenario would be if the Colombian President keeps communication with us and we would have relations to coordinate border surveillance but unfortunately in Colombia a right-wing extremist President rules. Duque is irrational and full of hatred against Venezuela,” President Maduro decried.

The Bolivarian President reiterated that Colombia has even plotted to destabilize Venezuela. “80 percent of the cocaine that arrives in the U.S. comes from Colombia and it is increasing every year”, he added.

National economy

Venezuela has lost its national income thunderously amid illegal economic, financial, and commercial sanctions. “The country does not borrow a dollar to invest in oil. We have 5 million barrels of oil production capacity…We lasted 14 months without being able to sell a drop of oil. We are recovering the wells, production, and international trade amid serious sanctions”, President Maduro said.

“Despite the illegal and cruel sanctions, we are recovering oil production with huge efforts. We will reach 1,500,000 barrels of oil. We created our own cryptocurrency and opened a window to our consumers…We are boosting the productive forces under an economic war. We produce now 80 percent of our food”, he explained. 

Taking into account the circulation of the US$ in the national commerce and consumption, President Maduro emphasized that the bolivar would be the national currency, which is set to recover its preponderant value in the economy. “As a result of the economic recovery, the bolivar will retake its role. We will continue developing policies so that the productive forces consolidate and return to economic growth,” he noted.

“Venezuela was a pioneer in raising the cryptocurrencies issue, which is an economic and financial reality… We have the Anti-Blockade Law, which is open-minded and offers guarantees to investors to enter deeply in the country’s investments sector,” he added.

Referring to the foreign debt, the Bolivarian President assured that Venezuela had distinguished itself for paying all its financial commitments; however, the Bolivarian nation suffers from bank account closures and withheld assets due to sanctions. 

“We were good payers until the sanctions arrived. We were prevented from paying when we had income because of the frozen bank accounts. If I had the payment for the Republic’s creditors, I would not be able to pay them because there are no accounts that accept payments,” he explained.

The Venezuelan President explained that the bondholders must negotiate conditions with the U.S. so that the country may have access to bank accounts, capital markets, and regularizations.

Regarding the loss of workers’ income in the territory, he recalled that Venezuela had the highest minimum wage in Latin America and the Caribbean in 2014, just a year before the sanctions started. 

“We had 99 percent income loss, despite that we have maintained housing construction, education, and health services. We guarantee care for our people,” President Maduro highlighted.

 

 

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