OAS Lends a Hand to Venezuelan Democracy, Irresponsible Opposition Ignores It

By: Orlando Avendaño - @OrlvndoA - Mar 17, 2017, 10:41 am
OAS Lends a Hand to Venezuelan Democracy
Almagro’s report is the most compelling and significant international support Venezuela has so far received. (El Nuevo Herald)

EspañolThis week, Secretary General of the Organization of American States Luis Almagro made a public statement on the status of a report on Venezuela and its humanitarian crisis, which he originally presented last May.

In the report, Almagro said the Venezuelan dictatorship violates every article of the Democratic Charter and completely disrupts democratic order and which has acted irresponsibly.

The secretary rejected the country’s “authoritarianism” as well as the torture, drug trafficking and censorship. He also condemned the false and depressing dialogue that took place over the last months of 2016.

Almagro’s report, with its update, has become the sole reliable backing for Venezuelan democracy and the most compelling and important international complaint that has been made so far.

Despite such a valuable opportunity, Venezuelans are witnessing a disturbing silence from the country’s political opposition.

Ambassador and former President of the Security Council of the United Nations Diego Arria recommended that the Venezuelan Parliament immediately support Almagro’s report.

In a video, Arria says:

“The Venezuelan regime violates all of the Inter-American Democratic Charter’s articles, a declaration of this nature had never occurred since the adoption of the Democratic Charter in 2001. Secretary Almagro condemns Maduro’s regime in a precise, and increasingly documented manner… I hope that the National Assembly of Venezuela will appropriate this report, endorse this report, commit itself and that it will support and collaborate with all the governments of Latin America to request Venezuela’s suspension.”

He then asked the Assembly to formally assume an official position and vote in support of resolution based on Almagro’s report.

“Congress should immediately convene a special meeting, read the document so it can be distributed, grab the document and send it the presidents of all Latin American and Caribbean congresses and send it to the United Nations’ General Secretary. They should really start an offensive plan to promote this report so that the countries that are going to have to vote to support the sanctions against Venezuela are informed,” the ambassador said. “If you want to rescue freedom, the Assembly has an obligation.”

Almagro’s voice must be supported and accompanied by all citizens, and by all the representatives of the Venezuelan opposition. As the Secretary General’s report becomes the most valuable effort so far, it would be foolish not to make use of it.

We, the civil society and the supporters of Democracy in Venezuela, must thank Almagro for his report and updates and for being a true friend of democracy in the country and for becoming a responsible representative of the values of the region and the OAS.

We should thank him. Instead, the opposition has remained silent, and that is unforgivable.

Orlando Avendaño Orlando Avendaño

Orlando Avendaño is a PanAm Post intern who resides in Caracas, Venezuela, where he studies social communication at Andrés Bello Catholic University. Follow @OrlvndoA.

Mexican Cement Company Eager to Help Build Trump’s Wall

By: Elena Toledo - @NenaToledo - Mar 16, 2017, 7:24 pm
Mexican cement giant Cemex has expressed interest in participating in Trump's landmark border wall project (

Español Mexican cement giant Cemex notes that its participation in the construction of the border wall proposed by the president of the United States, Donald Trump, could mean substantial growth in its operations in the United States, and would leave the company well poised to bid for lucrative infrastructure projects in the Republican administration. Cemex is one of the largest cement companies in the world and indicated in a presentation to investors that this year that it has plans to reduce its debt, which is estimated at between USD $1.2 billion and USD $1.7 billion, in addition to its plan to boost its assets, which are currently valued at up to USD $2.5 billion. Read More: Mexican Officials Aim to Block Contracts for Companies Building Trump's Border Wall Read More: Mexico Denounces Trump's Border Wall at UN Meeting for "Fostering Intolerance and Extremism" In early March, the Mexican cement company said that, if requested, it would be willing to supply cement for the construction of the border wall, which Donald Trump made a key pledge of his campaign. However, they said that they have not yet been asked to participate in the project. Currently, President Donald Trump is in the process of presenting his budget to the US Congress for fiscal year 2018, which has caused controversy over the cuts made to federal spending across various departments in order to increase the budget for national defense. Trump has also made budgeting for border security and immigration enforcement top priorities. googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1459522593195-0'); }); Donald Trump will ask for an additional $30 billion for the Department of Defense, $3 billion for the Department of Homeland Security, and a total of $4.1 billion for the border wall. In exchange he is calling for massive cuts at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of State, as well as the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the National Endowment for the Arts. Trump is likely to face strong blowback from Democrats, and some Republicans over the budget, which marks a sharp change from the budgetary priorities of the Obama administration. Source: Milenio

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