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The Venezuelan opposition says it is not involved in talks between Caracas and Washington

#Venezuelan #opposition #involved #talks #Caracas #Washington

Opposition parties in Venezuela, whose President Nicolas Maduro is not recognized by the United States, said Tuesday they had not been invited to new talks between the two governments.

On Monday, Maduro announced that a US delegation had arrived in Venezuela to discuss a “bilateral agenda” expanding on talks in March, which the White House said would focus on America’s “energy security.” “ focused.

The United States and Venezuela severed diplomatic ties in 2019 after Maduro was re-elected to a second term in 2018 in an election boycotted by the opposition.

Before Washington imposed sanctions on Venezuela, the South American country exported almost all of its oil production to the United States.

Washington sent a high-level delegation to Caracas in March, just days after Russia invaded Ukraine.

Observers said the move was aimed at distancing Caracas from ally Moscow and discussing easing US sanctions on Venezuelan oil after the Russian invasion caused global fuel prices to spike.

Maduro said Monday that National Assembly Speaker Jorge Rodriguez received a delegation from the US government.

This is despite Venezuela being excluded from this month’s Summit of the Americas hosted by US President Joe Biden in Los Angeles.

Rodriguez is also the government’s chief negotiator in talks with the opposition, which have been stagnant since last October.

On Tuesday, Omar Barboza, coordinator of the main opposition bloc, told reporters: “We were not summoned (to the talks), we do not know the agenda.”

In a bid to oust Maduro from power following his controversial re-election, Washington and dozens of other countries recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president and imposed a raft of sanctions on Caracas.

These prevent Venezuela from trading its crude oil – which at the time accounted for 96 percent of the country’s revenues – on the US market.

Since then, Maduro has received support from Russia to continue exporting oil despite the sanctions.

After talks in March, Washington announced it would ease some sanctions against Venezuela, including one linked to oil company Chevron, in a bid to encourage dialogue between Maduro’s government and the opposition.

Caracas also released two Americans jailed in Venezuela in what was widely seen as a goodwill gesture.

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