The Venezuelan politician, who was supported by President Donald Trump to dismiss and replace that country’s dictator, is preparing to lose his position in power – making it difficult for him to present his leadership claims and pay a stake in the heart of one of the Trump administration’s distinct foreign policies.
In January 2019, the leader of the Venezuelan opposition Juan Guaidó He declared himself the legitimate president of the country. That boss argued Nicolas Maduro, who has been in power for seven yearsI rigged the 2018 presidential election that kept him in control, and as a result, GuaidoAs president of the National Assembly, he was the legitimate interim president of the country according to the country’s constitution.
The United States and more than 50 other countries have backed Guaidó’s claim and have since worked to help him oust Maduro once and for all. They sanctioned politicians and businesses, sent badly needed food and medical aid, and helped maintain a global campaign to support Guaidó and boost his popularity.
But despite this two-year campaign, Guaidó remained in the National Assembly and Maduro in the president’s mansion. Come on Sunday, though, and only Maduro will likely stay where he is.
Venezuelans will go to the polls on Sunday to vote in the country’s National Assembly elections, where they will be determined 277 people To represent them as of January 5th.
But Guaidó and his opposition faction boycotted the elections because they say the election is rigged.
They have a strong case, especially since international observers from European Union The United Nations will not watch. In addition, government security forces have prevented the opposition from entering the legislative palace to participate in National Assembly sessions since January – right when the assembly was to re-elect Guaidó as its leader. Since then, Guaidó and his allies have kept themselves Parallel sessions Parliament is outside the institution.
Even if they are right – and Polls Indicates that many Venezuelans agree with their claims – it still means that Guaidó and his faction will likely lose their seats in the upcoming National Assembly. This would deal a heavy blow to the opposition and give Maduro a major victory.
“The future of the Guaidó project looks bleak,” said David Smeld, a Venezuela expert in the Washington office on the Latin American human rights group. “There is less international consensus on the status of Guaidó’s claim for the interim presidency after January 5.”
He continued: “It is likely that he will maintain the support, but it will be less strong, and the whole issue of Venezuela will swing in the United States and the European Union.” “It is likely that the next two months will see a deterioration in Guaido’s position, which will lead to a slow deterioration of his power and a slow consolidation of Maduro through 2021.”
The National Assembly vote could strengthen Maduro’s grip on Venezuela
Sunday’s rigged elections will likely represent a huge loss to what is left of Venezuela’s democracy and effectively complete Maduro’s autocratic control of the economically ruined country.
The National Assembly vote in December 2015 was considered the country’s last legitimate election. Since then, Maduro has put more and more of the nation’s government under his shoes, and he is now on the verge of claiming his final prize. With the Venezuelan legislature filled with the dictator’s friends, Maduro will have toppled the entire government to his will.
Guaidó would still have some ability to respond. Elected President Joe Biden Other leaders pledged to support his cause, and he controls a large portion of the country’s financial assets, including Accounts of the Central Bank of Venezuela in the United States, Oil Company Will weatherAnd and Gold in the Bank of England.
The problem, experts say, is that this effect is more external than internal. Once he officially leaves the National Assembly, Guaidó and his allies will not be able to stop the contracts and agreements that Maduro wants to sign with world powers like China and Russia to extract resources Or laws that Maduro wants to pass that could curb civil society and pro-democracy groups, experts say.
Maduro, then, has found a way to secure his rule over the past few years. After Sunday, his seat on the throne will almost certainly be secured.