The European Union is expected to make an announcement on Monday calling on Venezuela to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms in the country. Citing diplomatic sources, El Universal claims that the announcement will be endorsed by the EU’s twenty eight foreign ministers.
At the same time, Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo is expected to speak to the EU council on Spain’s recent spat with Venezuela. Earlier this week, Maduro insulted the Prime Minister of Spain, calling him “really racist”, and suggested that the Spanish government should “think about your mothers”.
Canadian Senator Writes About Venezuela
Senator Raynell Andreychuck wrote a piece published in The National Post today called “Venezuela on the brink”.
The article paints a bleak future for the country. Andreychuck points out that an out-of-control inflation rate, continued abuses against human rights and a shrinking economy have the potential to create chaos. Andreychuck argues that “Venezuela must urgently chart a new course” if it hopes to avoid, and says that he is proud to have sponsored a resolution presented before the senate on March 12, calling:
… upon Venezuelan authorities and opposition forces alike to engage in meaningful and inclusive dialogue; to uphold international human rights obligations; to restore the rule of law, constitutionalism and judicial independence; to curb inflation, corruption and lawlessness; and to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all Venezuelans.
Andreychuck was appointed to the Senate by Prime Minister Brian Mulroney in 1993. Prior to her appointment, she was a lawyer and later a judge in Saskatchewan.
Maduro Gives Away SUV
During this week’s En Contacto Con Maduro, his weekly television show, Maduro gave away an SUV to a grateful supporter. Below, a video of the event, along with my translation:
Maduro: … that I met on a highway, on a road. Let’s watch this video with the details. Go ahead.
Video Announcer: After an encounter in al calor de la patria [?], they long-time brothers bid each other farewell, eager to continue to build the people’s dreams. On the way home, full of the love that only the people can give him, he creates another tale.
Woman: Well, we were in our car as we do, normally… and then we saw the caravan pass. And we thought, “Who could that be?” We noticed that they weren’t advancing – they were following us really closely, and we thought, “What’s going on? What’s happening?” Suddenly, they knock on our window and they start to wave, and they said, “Mom! It’s the president! The president!” And I was like, “Where? Where? Oh yeah, it’s the president!” Suddenly, they order us to stop and I thought, “Why are they asking us to stop? What could we have done? My god, what have we done?” Then, we saw the president come out, and he said, “Get out of that car!”
Maduro: Get everything out [of the car] and take that SUV home. OK? Pick everything up.
Woman: [Maduro told us] “I used to have one just like that, but it always broke down on me. Get in this one! This is the car you’ll use now to go anywhere you want.” We couldn’t believe it.
Maduro: Take it, and tomorrow they’ll give you another one just like it. Just like it. You’re going to take one just like this one. God bless you. Who’s driving?
Woman: This is such a big surprise! We are truly grateful for this blessing that God has granted us through this president that we have here in our country. Truly, God will help him to always continue moving forward every day so that he can achieve the victory that he wants – that we all want! – for our nation.
Man in Purple: Here we are, keeping our promise, under instructions from our President, Nicolas Maduro. Only 48 hours ago, he made that promise to you while you were driving up the Caracas-La Guaira highway. Here is the key to [inaudible] to this truck from President Nicolas Maduro, a president who keeps his promises to the people.
Woman: Thanks for this blessing! I’m not going to let it go! Keep moving forward!
Venezuelan Oil Price Rises