Today, US President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will meet with the leaders of the Lima Group in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly to discuss the ongoing crisis in Venezuela.
Yesterday, members of the Rio Treaty—a rarely invoked defence pact among the US, Canada and several Latin American and Caribbean countries—voted 16 to 1 to activate the accord, which establishes that a threat to one member is a threat to all. Members of the Lima Group, a smaller coalition of Latin American countries focused on Venezuela, is meeting today to discuss how to proceed.
The invocation of the Rio Treaty and the assemblage of the Lima Group at the UN are not only aimed at ramping up international opposition to Nicolas Maduro’s presidency, but also at building regional solidarity against the regime. With opposition and abstentions to the Rio Treaty vote coming from Uruguay, Trinidad and Tobago and Cuba, meetings today and in the future will focus on developing regional unity to address the crisis.
The denunciation of the human rights abuses perpetrated by the Maduro regime will likely serve as a rallying point for all parties. An even stronger indication of solidarity could come from an extension of a mutual agreement on expanded sanctions against Caracas.
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Nick is the Director of the Daily Brief and a contributing Senior Analyst to it. An attorney, his areas of expertise include international law, international and domestic criminal law, security affairs in Europe and the Middle East, and human rights.