The Organization of American States (OAS) General Assembly voted today in favour of creating a body to consider the Venezuelan crisis from within the framework of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR, in Spanish), paving the way for an international military mission against the Maduro regime. While the possibility is still remote, today’s move from the OAS brings it one step closer to reality.
Today’s vote called on the foreign affairs ministers of TIAR-signatory nations to meet in the second half of this month to discuss the “destabilizing impact” that the Venezuelan crisis is having in the region.
The TIAR, also known as the Rio Treaty, is a hemispheric defense pact that has existed since 1948. Under the treaty, signatories–which includes the United States, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Argentina and others–are obligated to come to the defense of each other in the case of a military attack targeting any one member. Within the context of the Venezuelan crisis, some sectors of the opposition (including the Guaido government) have argued that the Maduro regime’s dictatorial rule constitutes an attack against Venezuela, hence falling within the scope of the TIAR.
Today’s vote passed with 12 votes in favour, five abstentions, and two absentees. The five abstentions were Costa Rica, Panama, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, and Uruguay.
Guaido reacted to the news in a tweet:
Venezuela is moving forwards towards freedom with the support of the international community, which is aware of the serious crisis in our country.
We thank the majority support from the OAS nations. We ask the rest to take stock of the crisis affecting Venezuela, and of its solutions.
Questions/Comments? E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org