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Belize’s Minister of Foreign Affairs addresses the OAS General Assembly.

The United States Government renewed its call for the Organization of American States to suspend Venezuela. The call is supported by six other OAS member states. Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Mexico and Peru supported the US in proposing a resolution rejecting the result of the “unconstitutional” election. If passed, it would initiate a process that could lead to Venezuela’s suspension. Bolivia was the only OAS member country to voice support for Maduro during the meeting on Monday. Today, Belize’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Wilfred Elrington addressed the OAS General Assembly.

Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs: “It is being widely contended that there are wide spread violations of Human Rights in this country which is inter alia conducive to spread exodus from the country and that the democratic order is disruptive. As of every other occasion when our Organization has been confronted which such grave and weighty allegations against a member state or membership is invariably divided if not polarized on the issue. On this occasion we are divided both on the issue of the veracity of the allegations as well as on the issue of how best to treat the situation. Likewise each time our Organization is confronted with such divisive issues, there arises the dreaded Specter of a possible fracture of the Organization. A specter which is in no wise fanciful given the recent Brexit phenomenon but the history of the Organization shows it to be a most resilient Organization. It has repeatedly demonstrated its capacity to find acceptable solutions to seemingly intractable problems. I end this brief intervention with no solution of my own but merely with a few questions. The first is this, is it really the case that the Venezuelan crisis is a matter of such fundamental principle on which compromise is absolutely unattainable. Two is this crisis indeed beyond the capacities of our hemispheric leaders to come up with a peaceful solution which will end the horrendous suffering of the Venezuelan people and of their friends which will conduce to a political accord between the opposing factions which is the only guarantee for a lasting peace in Venezuela?”

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has called the OAS a pawn of U.S. foreign policy and last year said he would pull Venezuela out of the organization. Thirty five countries form part of the OAS.

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