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Brazil, Mexico call for nonviolent solution for Venezuelan impasse

China Daily | Updated: 2019-02-27 09:32

Brazil's Vice President Hamilton Mourao gestures during an interview with Reuters in Brasilia, Brazil, Feb 14, 2019. [Photo/Agencies]

Brazil's Vice-President Hamilton Mourao said on Monday that he believes in a non-violent solution for the crisis in Venezuela.

"Brazil firmly believes that it is possible to get Venezuela back to the peaceful democratic life without any extreme measures, in which we will be mistaken by history as aggressors, invaders and violators of national sovereignty," Mourao said.

In an interview with GloboNews, a 24-hour news channel on Brazilian television, Mourao said there are "great powers" interested in Venezuela and it would be bad to bring a "Cold War environment" to South America.

Earlier on Monday, Mourao participated in the meeting of the Lima Group, which issued a joint statement calling for peaceful solutions for the conflict. They called for the resignation of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and new presidential elections to be held.

Meanwhile, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Monday also resumed his call for dialogue in Venezuela to resolve the political crisis between the ruling socialist party and the United States-backed right-wing opposition. "I believe dialogue is the best thing. The best thing would be to move away from the temptation to use force, to seek a diplomatic solution," he said during his daily news conference.

The Lima Group, founded by Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Paraguay in 2017, is a hemispheric bloc of countries mostly aligned with United States, which is backing the Venezuelan opposition's push to unseat Maduro.

However, the group rejected the idea of using force to achieve a democratic transition.

After the meeting, US Vice-President Mike Pence and Venezuela opposition leader Juan Guaido agreed on a strategy to tighten the noose around Maduro's government.

Pence announced more sanctions against Venezuela and $56 million in aid for neighboring countries grappling with a flood of people fleeing Venezuela.

Maduro hit back in an interview broadcast the same day, saying the regional meeting was aimed at setting up a parallel government and accusing the US of coveting his country's oil and being willing to go to war to get it.

Maduro announced on Saturday the severance of his country's diplomatic and political relations with Colombia, following the latter's support for Venezuela's opposition and military defectors.

Washington recognized Guaido as the nation's "interim president" on Jan 23, days after Maduro was inaugurated for a second term as Venezuelan president.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, in interviews on Fox News Sunday and CNN's State of the Union, did not rule out US military force but said "there are more sanctions to be had".

Xinhua, AP and AFP contributed to this story.

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