Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley says Monday’s meeting between CARICOM leaders and the UN Secretary General was very useful.
The meeting saw the CARICOM representatives receive a commitment from the UN Secretary General in its efforts to prevent external aggression in the current crisis in Venezuela.
In a statement, the leaders said UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres pledged to do what he could to foster dialogue between both sides in the expanding conflict.
Speaking after the meeting, Dr Rowley expressed satisfaction that the UN would work towards peace in Venezuela.
He expressed hope that the situation could be resolved through dialogue without external interference
The CARICOM delegation comprised Dr Rowley, Dr Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St Kitts and Nevis, Barbados Prime Minister, Mia Mottley, Grenada’s Foreign Minister, Peter David, and CARICOM Secretary-General Irwin LaRocque.
The delegation had expressed its grave concern over the untenable situation in Venezuela and stressed that further deterioration would seriously aggravate the plight of Venezuelans,
A CARICOM statement said it also emphasized the region’s commitment to the tenets of Article 2(4) of the UN Charter which calls on states to refrain from the threat or the use of force.
The statement added that CARICOM reaffirmed the view that there was an urgent need for meaningful dialogue leading to a peaceful internal solution for the Venezuelan people as the consequences of no dialogue will be dire.
The United Nations Secretary General extended his offer to facilitate dialogue and negotiation between the parties in Venezuela while the CARICOM delegation indicated its readiness to work assiduously to bring the parties to the negotiating table.
To this end, the CARICOM Heads engaged with Canada, the Russian Federation, the European Union and the African Union on the matter.
They also engaged with the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the Foreign Minister of Mexico with a view to reduce tensions and build a platform for dialogue.
Further engagements will take place in the next few days with meetings set to continue today.
Dr Rowley is scheduled to head to Washington DC today, for further meetings on the matter. There’s no word, however, on who he planned to meet with, in the US capital.
Maduro Open To Talks
In more developments on the Venezuela crisis President Nicolas Maduro has expressed interest in mediation talks in this country.
Speaking to members of the Venezuelan diplomatic corps in Caracas Monday, Maduro said he has spoken with CARICOM leaders, telling them he is open to meditation talks in “Trinidad and Tobago or wherever”.
He said he told governments who offered to meditate, that he’s ready once again in Venezuela or in Trinidad and Tobago or wherever to begin a round of conversations, dialogue, negotiations, with all of the Venezuelan opposition when and where they want them.”