WASHINGTON, USA – The following statement was released by Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell, and Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Marc Garneau:
“We welcome the announcement that Venezuelan-led, comprehensive negotiations will soon begin in Mexico City, Mexico. We hope this process will lead to the restoration of the country’s democratic institutions and allow for all Venezuelans to express themselves politically through free and fair local, parliamentary, and presidential elections. We urge all parties to engage in good faith to reach enduring agreements that lead to a comprehensive solution to the Venezuelan crisis. The forces of the democratic opposition have worked hard to build a Unitary Platform, and we recognize the need for such unity to advance these negotiations. We appreciate the Kingdom of Norway’s constructive role in facilitating these negotiations.
“We continue to call for the unconditional release of all those unjustly detained for political reasons, for the independence of political parties, for freedom of expression including for members of the press, and for an end to human rights abuses.
“We call for electoral conditions that abide by international standards for democracy, beginning with the local and regional elections scheduled for November 2021.
“We remain committed to supporting the Venezuelan people and to addressing Venezuela’s dire humanitarian crisis. We welcome further agreement among all political actors in Venezuela to allow for unfettered and transparent access to humanitarian assistance, to include food, medicine, vaccines, and other critical COVID-19 relief supplies.
“We reiterate our willingness to review sanctions policies if the regime makes meaningful progress in the announced talks.”