Foreign Ministry statement on the developments in Venezuela
The events in Venezuela have reached a dangerous point.
Having failed to remove Nicolas Maduro, including physically, extremist opponents of the legitimate Government of Venezuela have opted for the most confrontational scenario. Swearing in of an opposition leader as “Venezuela’s interim president” and his immediate recognition in this quality by the United States and several countries of the region are aimed at deepening the split in Venezuelan society, aggravating direct confrontation in the streets, dramatically destabilising political situation in the country and further escalating the conflict. Such a deliberate and obviously well-orchestrated creation of “dualism of power” in Venezuela, establishment of an alternative decision-making centre are a direct path towards chaos and erosion of the basis of Venezuelan statehood. There have already been first human casualties. We firmly condemn those who are pushing Venezuelan society into the abyss of violent civil discord.
We regard Washington’s arrogant actions as yet another demonstration of its total disregard for the norms and principles of international law and an attempt to play the role of self-imposed master of other nations’ future. It is an obvious attempt to apply in Venezuela a tested scenario of changing undesired governments.
We are especially alarmed by signals we are receiving from a number of capitals on the possibility of foreign military interference. We warn against such reckless undertakings as they are fraught with catastrophic consequences.
We urge sober-minded Venezuelan politicians opposed to Nicolas Maduro’s legitimate government not to become pawns in other players’ chess game.
We believe that any political activity can be undertaken strictly within the constitutional framework and in compliance with national legislation. It goes without saying that citizens of the country can openly express their opinion, including through manifestations, but only in a peaceful way, in a manner that would not provoke violence, let alone endanger public safety.
Only Venezuelans themselves have the right to determine their future. Destructive foreign interference, especially amid today’s extremely heightened situation, is unacceptable. Incitement has nothing to do with democratic process. It is a direct path towards lawlessness and bloodshed.
It is the mission of the international community to facilitate finding mutual understanding between various political forces in Venezuela for which national interests are a top priority. We are ready to cooperate with all countries that share these goals.