Through a vote on January 21, the European Parliament approved that it will continue to recognize the National Assembly of Venezuela, led by Juan Guaidó, who won in the 2015 legislative elections, despite the fact that in the recent December elections Chavismo regained control of the Legislative. The European Parliament also asks the 27 members of the European Union to recognize Guaidó as the interim president of that country, after the bloc lowered his status to leader of the opposition.
With 391 votes in favor, 114 against and 177 abstentions, the European Parliament gave a boost this Thursday to the leader of the Venezuelan opposition, Juan Guaidó.
The approved resolution, which is not legally binding, but has political weight, recognizes the continuity of the Venezuelan National Assembly, with an opposition majority that won in the 2015 legislative elections, as “the only legitimate, democratic and representative political body” of the Government of that country. Guaidó thanked the European Parliament for “supporting the Constitution and the Venezuelans.”
Venezuela’s legitimate dialogue is in this Parliament, focused on achieving free and fair elections. https://t.co/X3jCKDoZ7z
– Juan Guaidó (@jguaido) January 21, 2021
The pronouncement was made despite the fact that, in the last elections of December 6, 2020, the allies of President Nicolás Maduro retake control of that only body that was officially in the hands of the opposition. However, they were elections that were not recognized by a large part of the international community, due to allegations of fraud, after a series of interventions by President Nicolás Maduro, both in the National Electoral Council (CNE) and in opposition parties.
Chavismo appointed directors of the CNE, in charge of supervising the elections, something that, according to the country’s Constitution, was the responsibility of the National Assembly.
In addition, the Court appointed shadow figures of the ruling party, widely known as allies of Chavismo, to leadership positions in opposition political parties.
Faced with this situation, the Venezuelan opponents boycotted the elections, but at the same time gave a free pass to the ruling party to declare themselves the winner.
Although the vote on Thursday in Brussels supports that the European legislature only continues to recognize the old Venezuelan National Assembly, the European Parliament and the European Union bloc seem not to agree on this matter.
European Parliament asks to re-recognize Guaidó as interim president
In the same resolution, legislators in Brussels asked the 27 governments that make up the European Union to recognize Juan Guaidó as the interim president of Venezuela.
The European Parliament “calls on the member states to unequivocally recognize the constitutional continuation of the legitimate National Assembly of Venezuela elected in 2015 and the legitimate interim president of Venezuela Juan Guaidó,” said the European Parliament.
On January 6, the bloc indicated that it could no longer legally endorse Guaidó as the “legitimate” head of state of that nation, because he lost his position as president of the National Assembly and reduced his category to leader of the opposition.
The decision was made despite the fact that the EU did not support those elections and that European diplomats do not recognize Nicolás Maduro as the Venezuelan leader.
The United States, the United Kingdom and other nations still consider Guaidó the legitimate leader of Venezuela, following the contested 2018 presidential elections in which Maduro was re-elected for a second consecutive term, each of six years.
His predecessor, the late Hugo Chávez and who appointed him to the position, spent 13 years in power and the Chavista government is considered by his detractors as a dictatorship that has plunged his country into a deep social and economic crisis, causing the massive exodus of Venezuelans to other nations in the region.
With Reuters and EFE