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T&T | Keith Rowley Gov't refuses to support Venezuela's Juan Guido in the OAS

Venezuela's president Nicolas Maduro. Venezuela's president Nicolas Maduro.
PORT-OF-SPAIN January 8, 2021 - The government of  the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago says it will not be supporting  any motions brought forward by a 'purported representative' of Venezuela at the Organisation of American States (OAS), however it will continue to participate in all other matters. 

In a statement today, Ministry of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs says Trinidad and Tobago would not support 'improperly seated' members at OAS meetings. 

'Trinidad and Tobago will not participate in or vote in support of any motion put forward or sponsored by or on behalf of a purported representative of Venezuela (a country which withdrew from the OAS in 2017), or of any other country, who is improperly seated at meetings of the OAS,' the statement said.

'As recently emphasised by Dr the Honourable Keith Rowley, Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, the representatives of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to the OAS will continue to determine participation in voting and the country’s voting position at the OAS, based on the Government’s stance on the issues under consideration by the organization’s members,' the T&T government asserted.

The Ministry said however that Trinidad and Tobago 'values highly the contribution of the OAS and recognizes the importance of ensuring that there is no compromise to the organization’s integrity and that of its legitimate members'.

'The Government of Trinidad and Tobago will therefore continue to participate actively in the meetings and deliberations convened by the organization, including voting on matters and resolutions as required and as appropriate,' the statement noted.

On December 9, 2020, the OAS installed Guaido on the recomendation of the United States, and  issued a statement condemning the 'fraudulent elections' in Venezuela, calling on members of the OAS to support Juan Guaidó as 'Interim President' . The resolution was approved with 21 votes in favour including St. Lucia and Jamaica.

Six members were absent: Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago.

According to a Reuters report, the European Union no longer recognises Guaidó as Venezuela's legitimate head of state after he lost his position as head of the national assembly.  

Guaido is still being propped up by the United States and the UK as Venezuela’s leader fafter they disputed the 2018 re-election of President Nicolas Maduro.

In January 2019 the OAS Council rejected the legitimacy of Nicolas Maduro as President of Venezuela, citing human rights violations and the mass exodus of Venezuelans from their home country. 

In 2017, Venezuela announced its withdrawal from the OAS, which took effect in 2019

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  • Countries: Trinidad_Tobago

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