In the midst of the political crisis that erupted in Venezuela’s National Assembly (NA) earlier this week, delegations from all countries in the Americas on the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS) approved a resolution recognizing Juan Guaidó as the NA’s legitimate president. The resolution also reaffirms the need to call for fresh presidential elections. If the crisis continues to escalate, the OAS may meet again in the coming weeks.
The resolution was approved by 20 votes to 5, with 8 abstentions, condemning the violent clashes between January 5 and 7 which took place at the entrance to the NA between security forces and Venezuelan opposition deputies, including Guaidó. The resolution also calls for the complete renewal of the National Electoral Council (CNE) and the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ) and for these institutions to be independent of Maduro’s administration.
What happened in Venezuela this week?
On Sunday January 5, NA authorities were elected for the 2020-2021 term. Security forces prevented Guaidó and its allies from entering the NA and participating in the elections. In his absence and lacking the required parliamentary majority, PSUV elected Luis Parra as head of the institution. Meanwhile, opposition lawmakers met outside the NA and voted for Guaidó as NA president, subsequently sworn in as interim president of Venezuela January 7.