Why does Cuba support Maduro

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This content was published on May 17, 2019 - 6:54 am (Keystone-SDA)

The government and the opposition in Venezuela have been fighting for power for months - now Norway is trying to get the warring camps to the negotiating table. So far, however, unsuccessful.

The self-proclaimed Venezuelan interim president Juan Guaidó confirmed on Thursday (local time) that representatives of the opposition had traveled to Oslo for talks. However, there were no direct negotiations with negotiators in the government of Head of State Nicolás Maduro. "We do not give in to a wrong dialogue," said Guaidó.

The government was ready to talk. "We always rely on dialogue," wrote Communications Minister Jorge Rodríguez on Twitter, adding a quote from Indian freedom fighter Mahatma Gandhi: "There is no way to peace - peace is the way."

No negotiation process

Guaidó lowered expectations of the talks in Norway. "No, negotiations are currently not taking place between the government and the opposition. There is only one international mediator group located in Caracas," Guaidó told the ZDF "heute journal" on Thursday. There is still no negotiation process.

Meanwhile, head of state Maduro received representatives of the International Contact Group from European and Latin American countries in the Miraflores Presidential Palace in Caracas. The envoys also met with representatives of the opposition to explore a way out of the crisis. In the past few years there had been attempts to negotiate between the government and the opposition, but they were always ended without any concrete results.

In Cuba, the Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland spoke with her colleague Bruno Rodríguez about the situation in Venezuela. "Canada hopes to work with Cuba to find ways to counter the worsening political, economic and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela," she tweeted after the two-hour closed-door meeting.

Keep the military on course

Rodríguez assured: "Cuba is ready to contribute to initiatives that enable a respectful dialogue with the Venezuelan government." Cuba is the closest ally of the Maduro government. According to estimates by the US and the Venezuelan opposition, numerous Cuban military advisers and intelligence agents are in the South American country to keep the armed forces in line.

"Unfortunately, there are a lot of Cuban military who support the Maduro government, and there are a lot of reservations and fears within the armed forces. Nobody knows what happens when they cross over to the other side. That's why it's not that easy for the military ", Guaidó told the ZDF" heute journal ".

The young MP declared himself interim president of Venezuela in January and denied legitimation to Maduro. Although he is recognized by many countries as the legitimate interim president, he has not yet been able to assert himself against Maduro in Venezuela.

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