On Thursday, May 6, the Lima Group held a summit in Guatemala to analyze the situation in Venezuela. Participants pointed to Nicolás Maduro “as the only one responsible for the increasingly serious humanitarian situation”. The meeting took place after the group met with the International Contact Group (ICG) on June 3 in New York to seek joint solutions to Venezuela’s political crisis. The entities recognized that the response must come from Venezuelans themselves, but that the regional impact of the crisis forces the hand of the international community to be more active.
The Lima Group argued that Maduro’s hold on power is an impediment to the restoration of democracy in Venezuela as well as a threat to peace and security in the region. It also called on the international community to take action in response to “the growing involvement of Maduro’s administration in drug trafficking and organized crime”.
The joint communiqué of the IGC and the Lima Group confirms that both groups will continue to work in a coordinated manner towards a peaceful transition through free and transparent elections. Peruvian Foreign Minister Néstor Popolizio said, “We will implement a program to negotiate with the countries that indirectly support Maduro [Russia, China and Cuba, among others], to make them part of the solution”.