El Nacional resports that the PSUV and the MUD have agreed to meet in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic as part of a dialogue effort to help the two sides bridge the rift between them. The initiative was mediated by former presidents Jose Rodriguez Zapataro (Spain), Leonel Fernandez (Dominican Republic), and Manuel Torrijos (Panama).

El Nacional reports that preparations in Punta Cana have been taking place for at least three days. There, representatives from the two sides have been ironing out the details of which topics the dialogue will cover. The PSUV delegation is made up of Foreign Affairs Minister Delcy Rodriguez, Libertador municipality mayor Jorge Rodriguez, and National Assembly deputies Elias Jaua and Hector Rodriguez.The MUD delegates are Carlos Vecchio, Luis Aquiles Moreno, and Robert Marrero.

The newspaper cited sources close to the negotiations as saying:

The orders are to hear the parties. There are no negotiations or concrete negotiations because everything will be discussed afterwards, both by the PSUV and the opposition.

El Nacional reports that the dialogue was initiated at the request of Maduro, who asked UNASUR secretary general Ernesto Samper to put together a team of former leaders for the purposes of mediating talks.

For the opposition, one of the most important points will be to address regards the recall referendum it wants to hold against Maduro this year.

The point of the Punta Cana meeting will be to come up with a time frame for formal talks between teh two sides. If the meeting If the meeting is successful, the formal dialogue is likely to take place in Caracas.

Torrealba Denies Punta Cana Meeting

The head of the Mesa de la Unidad Democratica, Jesus Torrealba, flatly denied today that the PSUV and the MUD were involved in any kind of negotiations.

Torrealba explained that the MUD did indeed hold meetings with the former presidents of Spain, Dominican Republic and Panama, but that representatives from the PSUV were not at all involved.

Torrealba also said that the MUD would not compromise on several key points, which include holding the recall referendum against Maduro, freeing the country’s political prisoners, allowing exiled Venezuelans to return to the country, addressing the humanitarian crisis in the country and allowing the National Assembly to carry out its duties.

Miranda state governor Henrique Capriles echoed Torrealba’s assertion that the MUD and the PSUV were not negotiating, repeating a phrase that he has used in the past: “[What’s the] dialogue? Putting a date on the recall referendum this year”.

I am out of the province until Tuesday, June 31. The daily updates will be less thorough until then. I apologize.

Questions/Comments? E-mail me! Invenezuelablog@gmail.com

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