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Foreign Minister Ampuero: "We will maintain our Embassy in Venezuela with the government of President Juan Guaidó"

Thursday, January 24, 2019

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Roberto Ampuero, referred today to the situation in Venezuela, reaffirming that for Chile the President is Juan Guaidó, leader of the National Assembly. "It is thus established in the 1999 Venezuelan Constitution and that is what is in force. There is a process there that absolutely conforms to the Constitution," he said, adding that for Chile "there are not two presidents".

The Chancellor reported that as a country, "we will maintain our Embassy in Venezuela before the government of President Juan Guaidó" and explained that "we are very interested in continuing to address the concerns and issues that overwhelm the nearly 16,000 Chileans living in that country". In addition, he recalled that the Embassy has two official guests who have long been living under Chilean protection: Freddy Guevara and Roberto Enríquez.

The Secretary of State assured that today there are two options: "either you are for democracy or you are with the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro" and he pointed out that the "democrats of Venezuela have asked for the support of the international community". In this regard, he stated that "Chile is not deaf nor does it ignore a request from a very broad movement, the majority of Venezuela, that in accordance with the Constitution wants to re-establish democracy, freedom and prosperity".

In this sense, he pointed out that "we are at a key moment for the development of democracy in Latin America, because of what is happening in Venezuela. Chile's voice is very clear, it identifies itself and calls for free, transparent elections with international observers and that these take place within the period established by the Venezuelan constitution of 1999".

Finally, the Minister said that it is urgent that a humanitarian channel be opened to deliver aid: "Nicolás Maduro has refused to allow the entry of medicine and food to its population that is suffering from the shortage". "We believe that there has been too much violence, too much pain, too much hunger, too much suffering in Venezuela and also too many Venezuelans who have had to flee desperately. It's time for that to change," he added.