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Colombia/Venezuela: Petro's surprise visit to Maduro

2023-01-08T07:54:31.199Z


Colombian President Gustavo Petro met on Saturday January 7 in Venezuela with his counterpart Nicolás Maduro, for a brief meeting, the details of which...


Colombian President Gustavo Petro met on Saturday January 7 in Venezuela with his counterpart Nicolás Maduro, for a brief meeting whose details have not filtered, a few days after the total reopening of the border between the two countries and the announcement, denied, a truce with the Colombian ELN guerrillas.

The meeting between the two leftist leaders lasted about three hours at the presidential palace in Miraflores, where Maduro received Petro without military honours.

Colombia's first leftist president left the palace after 5:00 p.m. local time, without making a statement but posing for the photo of the handshake, AFP journalists noted.

“Very fruitful meeting”

We had an important and very fruitful

meeting,” Nicolás Maduro wrote on his Twitter account after the meeting, a message that was reposted by Gustavo Petro.

"

We have a clear path of joint work that will continue to produce positive results for our countries in different areas, long live the union between

Colombia

and

Venezuela

," wrote the socialist leader.

The third meeting between the two leaders, the second to be held in Caracas, comes a week after the complete reopening of all border crossings, closed in 2019 after the rupture of diplomatic relations with the former conservative Colombian government of 'Ivan Duque (2018-2022), but also after the confusion around the announcement by Mr. Petro of a ceasefire with the National Liberation Army (ELN, Guevarist), immediately denied by the insurgents.

Read alsoIn Venezuela, the opposition dismisses Juan Guaido

Venezuela is one of the guarantors of the ongoing negotiations to put an end to hostilities with the last guerrillas still active in Colombia, after the peace agreement concluded in 2016 with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC, Marxists).

Isolated on the diplomatic scene

Gustavo Petro went to Venezuela on November 1, two months after his accession to power and the re-establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The two men then met in Egypt during the COP27 summit to promote an alliance for the protection of the Amazon.

So far isolated on the diplomatic scene (apart from Russia, Iran, Cuba or Nicaragua), Nicolás Maduro is taking advantage of the war in Ukraine.

Even if the current American president Joe Biden continues to formally not recognize Nicolás Maduro as president of Venezuela, deeming his election in 2018 fraudulent, the oil crisis caused by the Russian invasion has led to a warming of relations.

Officially, the French position, centered on that of the United States, has not changed either, but the meeting filmed in the corridors of COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh (Egypt) between Nicolás Maduro and French President Emmanuel Macron indicate that the chancelleries communicate.

The French head of state had addressed Nicolás Maduro by calling him “

president

” and had indicated that he was going to call him.

Gustavo Petro is due to make a state visit to Chile on Monday and meet his Chilean counterpart, the young left-wing president Gabriel Boric.

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2023-01-08

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