Венесуела: be or not to be
The article deals with the most crucial components of the current political and institutional crisis in Venezuela. A brief historical deflection into the events of 1989-2020 was made, which indicate, among other things, deep-seated left-wing political views and feelings amidst the majority of the population. This situation serves as a solid platform for strengthening the role of the ruling PSUV party and the present head of State, N. Maduro, in the country’s domestic politics.
The political and institutional crisis in the above-mentioned oil-rich South American country has expanded sharply, after being elected Juan Guaidó, a representative of the opposition party VP («People’s Will») as a Chairman of the National Assembly on January 5, 2019. He challenged the prevailing President, declaring himself as the Acting head of State just on January 23, 2019.
In this context, the key social and economic aftermaths of the crisis in present-day Venezuela are revealed, in particular, such as the GDP contraction, hyperinflation, growth of the population living in extreme economic poverty, an increase of Venezuelans forced to leave the country due to, above all, obvious signs of a humanitarian crisis.
Deepening of the Venezuelan society in destructive processes, escalating of the political debates at the level of parties’ leaders, a lack of the transparent discussion in the public arena concerning the country’s future, to be a necessary condition for realizing the citizen’s rights to democratic choice, appear as consequences of the failure of Guaidó’s strategy. It was built in particular on the desired, but not achieved cessation the usurpation of power by Maduro.
The postures of the main international players (USA, EU, OAS, «Lima Group», International Contact Group) are outlined with regard to the assessments of the domestic situation in Venezuela and suggestions for resolving the political crisis and restoring democracy in this country, in particular via introducing sanctions against Venezuelan officials and legal entities, as well as establishing a constructive dialogue between Maduro and the opposition. The main items of Ukraine’s official position on the «Venezuelan issue» had also been notified.
In a nutshell, a conclusion is made that for a certain category of Ukrainian voters and for the majority of Venezuelans, despite the obvious differences, the issue of the public administration model remains rhetorical, authoritative, as an outcome of the improvement of democratization, or authoritarian one.
Keywords: the National Assembly of Venezuela, the Venezuelan regime, a biased electoral conditions, a fragmented domestic opposition, a Venezuelan-led transition process, the main international players.
A brief historical digression of 1989-2020: key events.
Convulsive political changes, accompanied by contradictory socio-economic conflicts, have gripped Venezuela since the last days of February 1989. Many Latin American scholars have analyzed the obvious signs of perturbations, including foreign diplomats.
The day of February 27, known as "Caracazo", became the detonator of the political and social instability in which the country is still. Protests by mostly impoverished people in the capital, Caracas, dissatisfied with the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) demand for higher prices for basic necessities and services and a political class discredited by corruption, were severely suppressed. During the term of President Carlos Andres Perez  of the Democratic Action Party, which initiated liberal economic policies, between 300,000 and 3,000 people lost their lives in ten days as a result of police and military violence.
In February 1992, the left-wing military, led by 37-year-old Lieutenant Colonel Hugo Chavez, surrendered after a failed coup attempt against KA, who was accused of social crisis in the country. Peresa.
Being pardoned by President Rafael Caldera (the Copei Social Christian Party) and released from prison in 1996, Chavez founded the Fifth Republic Movement as opposed to the historic but compromised Copei and Democratic Action parties. ». He won the 1998 presidential election, gaining 56.2% of the vote. He later declared his own "anti-imperialist project" and the need to hold a constituent referendum to reform the country's Basic Law.
Another national strike in Caracas, which was accompanied by mass protests for six days in April 2002, mostly by small and medium-sized businesses, killed 19 people and injured more than 100. After the coup d'etat of April 11,  businessman Pedro Carmona proclaimed himself interim president. Chavez was detained, but the lieutenant colonel managed to return to power due to pressure from his military sympathizers and his admiration for the protection of the Miraflores presidential palace.
In early December 2002, the country's oil workers went on strike to force Chavez to resign. During the 63-day protest, oil production fell from 2 million barrels per day to 150,000 barrels per day. The goal was not achieved, but the losses amounted to about 13 billion USD (more than 13% of gross domestic product (GDP) at current prices - the author's calculation).
Five years later, in a referendum on constitutional reform to transform Venezuela into a "socialist state," 50.7 percent of voters voted against it in December 2007, marking Chavez's first political defeat at the polls.
In 2010-2012, there were hidden facts about the president's health, and various rumors spread that he was traveling to Cuba to treat the disease. Chavez appointed Vice President Nicolas Maduro as his successor in December 2012. But a month later, the nomination of a seriously ill head of state for the fourth consecutive presidential term was canceled .
As expected, Maduro won the presidential election in April 2013. The results of the vote were challenged by the opposition and led to mass protests, which killed ten people and injured more than eighty.
For the first time since the ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), formed in 2008 on the basis of the Fifth Republic Movement and other left-wing parties, the table of the Democratic Unity Table has succeeded. to win the parliamentary elections on December 6, 2015, winning a qualified majority. However, a month later, the National Assembly (NA, parliament) of the new convocation was declared "illegal" by a decision of the Supreme Court.
In May 2017, N. Maduro published a statement on holding elections to the Constituent Assembly in July of the same year to prepare a new Basic Law. This was seen, de facto, as the president's seizure of extraordinary powers. The opposition, considering such actions illegal, did not take part in the elections, avoiding recognizing the legitimacy of the Constituent Assembly, formed mainly of representatives of the PSUV and their ideological supporters (the Chavists). Attempts to establish a dialogue between the Chavists and the opposition, which began in the Dominican Republic (August 2017) and continued in Venezuela (January 2018), were unsuccessful.
In May 2018, N. Maduro formally won the presidential election for the second time without the participation of the main opposition forces. The election results were not recognized by the NA and a number of countries, which also declared illegitimate the inauguration of the President on January 10, 2019. The Supreme Court, controlled by the ruling regime, immediately ruled that the parliament was "unconstitutional."
The institutional challenge to the presidential power was thrown on January 5, 2019 by the elected NA Chairman Juan Guaydo, a representative of the opposition party VP (Narodnaya Volya). He proclaimed himself on January 23, 2019, Acting head of state, referring to Art. 233, 333 and 335 of the Constitution (contain a list of facts of the absence of the President in the country; the obligation of any citizen to cooperate in order to restore the Constitution; the Supreme Court's official interpretation of the Basic Law). In this capacity, Acting the president was immediately supported by the United States, Colombia, Brazil, France, and Spain. The head of parliament, among other things, launched a campaign to deliver international humanitarian aid to Venezuela.
Against the background of N. Maduro's refusal to help, which he contemptuously dubbed "a form of foreign intervention", H. Guido's attempt to deliver food and medicine to the country on February 23, 2019 ended in clashes on the borders with Colombia and Brazil. At least four people were killed, about 300 were injured and 2 buses carrying "humanitarian" goods burned. At the same time, more than 200 Venezuelan servicemen expressed their support. at. heads of state. The vast majority of them managed to leave the country.
Content analysis of the events of 1989-2020 in Venezuela allows us to highlight the following main conclusions. The country with the world's largest proven oil reserves (297 billion barrels ) maintains ingrained left-wing political views and sentiment among the majority of the population, combined with active anti-American rhetoric. Oil sales have been and remain the main source of state budget revenues. Left-wing populists who hold power generally ignore the objective effect of economic laws. At the same time, Chavism uses a solid platform to strengthen its role in domestic politics: the ruling PSUV party has 6.3 million members (almost 22% of the population), of which more than a third are members of military families (the country's armed forces form 375,000). persons who, according to the law, cannot be members of political parties and movements). In the period from January 2019 to December 2020, Venezuela was de facto approaching a kind of "political-administrative dualism": the formal existence of two heads of state, two legislatures and two supreme courts. In addition to internal factors, the Venezuelan conflict involves the international community, which pursues various geopolitical and geoeconomic goals.
Political aspects of the institutional crisis. Until December 2020, Venezuela had, on the one hand, a legitimate NA (167 seats), where the opposition retained a majority, on the other - the Constituent Assembly (503 delegates), convened by Maduro in July 2017, and endowed with legislative powers to make amendments to the Constitution. The Basic Law of December 30, 1999, as amended on February 15, 2009, is currently in force. The cornerstone of the law is the concept of "socialism of the XXI century" by W. Chavez.
This ideological idea, being endowed with social immortality, in my opinion, lies in the plane of the essence of the statement of the German poet and philosopher F. Schiller about utopia: "What does not happen will never become obsolete" . In addition, the Constituent Assembly de facto took over the functions of parliament. But since the Constituent Assembly was convened, each of the two current legislatures has accused each other of illegitimacy. At the same time, they alternated their sessions in a single room of the federal palace.
The international democratic community, from Washington to Brussels, did not recognize the holding of parliamentary elections on December 6, 2020, which reaffirmed the government's propensity for political play, and proved to be a de facto attempt to liquidate the NA elected in December 2015. In a manifesto signed in Madrid on the eve of the "will", about a thousand experts from more than forty countries, members of the International Bar Association, stressed the following key factors: 1) the invalidity of the transaction because there are no legal and political guarantees and democratic "; 2) the desired preservation of the legitimacy of the NA, which was elected in December 2015, "to ensure guarantees of human rights protection in the country" .
The "Great Patriotic Pole" in the coalition of political parties led by "PSUV", according to the simulacrum, won 67.6% of the vote (3.56 million voters) who visited the polling stations; turnout did not exceed 30%. That is, the "Chavists" received 253 out of 277 seats in the NA (by the decision of the National Electoral Council, the number of deputies was increased). It can be assumed that the total control of this party over the legislature is able to "ensure" the continuation of the socio-economic, political and institutional collapse of the country.
The collapse of the legitimacy of the government N. Maduro opposes, despite US sanctions, also maintaining control over the operation of the state oil company "Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A." ("PdVSA"), one of the leading in the group of life-sustaining entities. According to political scientists, N. Maduro shows the natural intention of a powerful ruler, no more. However, according to JW Goethe, it is considered a big mistake to "see yourself bigger than you really are." Since, the proponent of power, in my opinion, "bends" his "story line". According to eyewitnesses, the figure tends to use the technology of manipulation of mass consciousness, the classic mechanisms of disorientation of both the disparate opposition and society as a whole. Symptomatically, in November 2019, Maduro announced funding (€ 12 million) to upgrade the technical systems of the Department of Scientific and Criminal Investigation using Cellebrite Touch 2 equipment, one of the latest technologies for hacking phones and computers.
Conducting a conditional parallel between the results of the above-mentioned presidential (May 2018) and parliamentary (December 2020) elections, in my opinion, fully confirms the skill of N. Maduro in carrying out "maneuvers". In particular, in the presidential election he received 6.2 million votes (67.81%), while his closest rival G. Falcon (the only representative of the "united" but not influential opposition, who took part in them and was tough criticized for his actions by the main opposition parties) - 1.9 million votes (21%). The elections, as noted above, were declared illegitimate by the international democratic community  due to three main facts: the expression of will was declared by the Constituent Assembly, but not by the National Electoral Council, as required by the country's constitution; exclusion of major opposition political parties from participating in elections; allotment by the Constituent Assembly of only one and a half months for the election campaign instead of the six months provided by the Basic Law.
Complicating the situation is the lack of a clear interpretation of the above-mentioned Articles 233, 333 and 335 of the Venezuelan Constitution and a clear mechanism for their implementation. In July 2017, the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS) L. Almagro drew special attention to the shortcomings of this mechanism. In particular, in order to legitimize his actions, Speaker H. Guaidó would have to be sworn in at the NA and then call a new presidential election. However, he "swore" only to the participants of the mass demonstration in Caracas.
An institution such as the Supreme Court of Venezuela in Exile has been formed
33 judges and jurors on July 21, 2017 during the institutional crisis, and whose members are physically in other countries (Panama, Chile, Colombia and the United States), communicating with each other via the Internet, also called on the NA to implement Art. 233 of the Basic Law of the country. This article contains, inter alia, provisions for holding new general, direct and secret elections within a period of thirty days, in the absence of a newly elected or elected president before taking office.
In public law, a distinction is made between the concepts of "primary legitimacy" and "current legitimacy" . We can discuss the presence of N. Maduro's initial legitimacy in the period 2013-2017, but do not ignore the fact that the 2013 presidential election was recognized as generally meeting international standards. At the same time, numerous human rights violations, in particular during 2017-2019, lead to judgments about the head of state's loss of current legitimacy. As the elections of May 20, 2018 were declared illegitimate, N. Maduro also lost his primary legitimacy on January 10, 2019 (date of inauguration).
On the other hand, the Supreme Court, the Prosecutor General, the armed forces (the backbone of the regime) and all other law enforcement agencies, as well as the National Electoral Council, are controlled by Maduro. It relies on outside support, primarily from Russia, Cuba, China, South Africa and Turkey. Instead, H. Guaidó did not have sufficient power to control the political situation and to hold new elections in the country.
In general, it seems that the interpretation of the presidential elections in Venezuela, held in May 2018, as illegitimate, corresponds to the position that the position of the country's president can be considered vacant. However, this situation is not clearly provided for in Article 233 of the Constitution as such, which means the absence of the head of state. In general, it should be noted that different interpretations come from the subject of interpretation - a supporter or opponent of the chairman of the NA.
At the same time, at the international level in the period from January 2019, the political component, but not the legal one, was dominant in the recognition of H. Guaydo as acting heads of state in more than 55 countries, including the United States, Canada, Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan and Australia.
Approved on January 31, 2019, the resolution of the European Parliament by 439 votes to 104, also recognized the Speaker of the Venezuelan Parliament Acting President and reaffirmed her full support for the National Assembly. However, the IMF did not recognize H. Guaydo as acting President of Venezuela.
Key socio-economic consequences of the crisis situation in modern Venezuela. In my analysis of the crisis situation in the socio-economic system formed in Venezuela over the last 30 years, it is necessary to focus attention, in my opinion, on the priority aspects of the crisis, first of all in the sphere of public administration.
As mentioned above, the increase in protest activity of the Venezuelan population has been observed since February 1989. The instigators of the protests are, first of all, the decrease in the level of control over socio-economic processes by state institutions and the escalation of political conflicts. Contradictions in the functioning of political institutions in the country have, in my opinion, led to imbalances and instability of government structures due to excessive politicization of these processes, both by the PSUV and VP and other opposition parties, as well as the government's inability to regulate crises.
The demands of the protesters are addressed to the authorities, primarily regarding the strategy and management methods. Whether there are any claims of a change of policy remains an open question, as the results of such a poll, even if conducted, are unlikely to be officially made public or reassuring to non-followers of 21st century socialism. One can unmistakably refer to the lack of transparent polls to identify the number of ordinary Venezuelans who: a) sympathize with a system where, according to George Orwell, all are equal and some are more equal; b) maintain faith in the "socialism of the XXI century", hope for the "resuscitation" of the Communist Party, still existing in a number of countries in the post-Soviet space; c) are aware of the consequences of the wave of revolutions, in particular in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe in the 1980s, which led to the complete discrediting of the ideas of socialism-communism as reactionary and dangerous.
The average Venezuelan citizen, or - if you will - a respectable citizen (the statement of the iconic figure of Ukraine - Ivan Franko), as follows from the testimony of many eyewitnesses, he does not notice how immersed in what he may want to overcome - "poverty, imprisonment and lawlessness" ( definition of a prominent German philosopher-existentialist ).
This situation was aptly described by a Spanish journalist  of the agency France-Presse. She cleverly combined and at the same time compared the feelings of imprisoned Venezuelan servicemen, frustrated by the situation on the one hand, and, on the other, the accomplished "Chavists," ideologically divided by the daily violence in Caracas. She did not miss the Cubans, who are trying to bring the victory of the "Venezuelan revolution" closer, as well as the leaders of both armed gangs and opposition leaders. It is noteworthy that the author's impressions are far from the clichés that allegedly made it possible to intellectually comprehend the complex processes that were gaining momentum in Venezuela. In particular, if the figure of W. Chavez is characterized by France-Presse in many relatively neutral shades and visible contradictions, the same characteristics, in her opinion, are characteristic of both the followers of the former head of state and his political opponents.
Participating as a diplomatic employee of the Embassy of Ukraine in the Kingdom of Spain in another trade and economic event held in Barcelona, the author asked the Venezuelan diplomat his opinion on the social portrait of the average Venezuelan citizen. Later, he had a conversation on the same topic with a Chinese diplomat. The conclusion I have made and will allow myself to make public is this: with external social similarities and numerous differences, the average Chinese is always helped by his national practicality, which is probably lacking for the average Venezuelan.
The decline in economic activity continues in Venezuela from 2013-2014. In particular, according to the NA (convocation 2015-2020), for the period 2013-2018, GDP fell by 48.3%, GDP per capita fell to level of 1947. As of the end of 2019, about 70% of the production resources of enterprises in industry and agriculture were not used. The share of the population living below the poverty line increased from 48.4% (2014) to 91.3% (2017) , ie to almost 27 million people.
Between 2013 and 2019, about 4.6 million Venezuelans left the country, of which 3.8 million arrived in neighboring Latin America and the Caribbean. IMF studies show that with additional training or retraining, Venezuelan migrants will be able to ensure GDP growth in host countries in the range of 0.1 - 0.3 percentage points for the period 2017-2030 .
The rapid, almost daily rise in prices (hyperinflation) is one of the most painful problems faced by ordinary Venezuelans. During the period from November 2017 to November 2018, the consumer price index, according to the NA (convocation 2015-2020), increased by 1,300,000% . In the last months of 2018, prices for basic necessities almost doubled every 19 days, the exchange rate as of December 2019 reached 1 USD = 46 398 bolivars (for comparison: as of mid-2011: 1 USD = 4, 3 bolivars) . It is noteworthy that the introduction of strict government control over the exchange rate of the bolivar to the USD did more harm than good, as it was carried out to accumulate funds provided on a selective basis to enterprises in the form of subsidies.
It is tempting to find an answer to the question of how this could have happened in a country with rich raw material resources, especially oil reserves. About 90% of export earnings came from the supply of these raw materials, mainly to the US market and a number of Caribbean countries, primarily Cuba. As a result of falling oil prices in 2014, Venezuela's trade deficit increased to USD 14.7 billion  (for comparison: in January-June 2018, the deficit decreased and amounted to 2.8 billion, for the same period In 2019, it increased again to 4.4 billion USD ). Such fluctuations in the natural size of the trade deficit, in any case, objectively led to a significant reduction in the volume of imported goods that were previously imported into the domestic market and to some extent met the needs of consumers.
As a result, prices for imported goods rose sharply, accelerating inflation and, subsequently, led to hyperinflation. The authorities also resorted to virtually uncontrolled issuance of surplus cash, which was intended, for example, not for the development of small and medium-sized businesses, but - above all - to raise the minimum wage to win the sympathy of the poor. As a result, the bolivar rapidly lost its value. The so-called "state certificate", introduced by the government and issued to persons loyal to the government, serves primarily to issue a minimum set of consumer basket products to its holders.
The government of N. Maduro was faced with the need to seek external borrowing, in particular after the recognition of the inability to timely fulfill the obligation to pay interest income on government securities.
As obtaining such borrowings from outside usually requires significant efforts of qualified experts to restore creditors' trust and, finally, for a long time, in August 2018 the government introduced a new currency - "sovereign bolivar" in the ratio of 1: 100,000 to the previous one. "Strong bolivar", tying the "sovereign bolivar" to the national cryptocurrency "petro" as one of the sources of funding. Given the financial sanctions imposed by the United States against Venezuela, which prevent the formation of its new debts or refinancing through the institutions of the United States, it is possible to realize more deeply the incessant loss of "sovereign bolivar" of its value.
In addition, Venezuelan energy networks have collapsed since March 2019, causing serious disruptions in the provision of other services, such as water supply and the operation of basic and health facilities. According to experts from the Autonomous University of Madrid, repeated power outages in Venezuela in March 2019 alone resulted in total losses equivalent to almost 2.5% of the country's GDP .
According to media reports, unlike most cryptocurrencies operating in the market (for example, bitcoin or ether), the Venezuelan "petro" seems to have as its collateral national reserves of gold, oil, gas and diamonds (N. Maduro in November 2017). first announced its intention to extract the "national" cryptocurrency, and in April 2018, investors are likely to begin mining "petro") .
Experts differ on the effectiveness of the Venezuelan cryptocurrency. Some note that it ("petro") can theoretically be provided with the country's natural resources, but the question is who (the state or creditors) will actually dispose of them. Others believe that given the economic crisis, the only way to determine an economic agent who would agree to provide foreign currency to Venezuela is to grant him a privileged right, the belief that only the entity (legal or natural person) that will have At its disposal, Petro will be able to obtain a permit for the extraction of gold ore or oil .
Venezuela's cryptocurrency commissioner, K. Vargas, said in February 2018 that the government was seeking to attract investors from Turkey, as well as the Middle East (Qatar), Europe and the United States, to prepay Petro's value. It is "tied" to the price of one barrel of Venezuelan oil. At the same time, the selling price of this cryptocurrency also depends on the content of the contract concluded between the interested buyer and the government.
In February 2018, they were preparing to release 100 million "petro". The total cost of the issue was estimated at USD 6 billion. According to Libro Blanco (the regulator of the Venezuelan cryptocurrency), 38.4 million assets in the form of petro began to be sold.
At the same time, the regulator warned: although the supply of "petro" is stable (100 million), the volume of cryptocurrency production may change if its producers reach such an agreement. In addition, when a petroleum producer wishes to exchange a cryptocurrency, such an exchange rate will be equivalent to the price of a barrel of oil in "sovereign bolivars".
Among the issues that remain open are the following: is it possible to pay taxes, utilities and pay for the use of a number of services (transport, health, etc.) using "petro"; whether the Venezuelan cryptocurrency will enter the international market, in particular through transactions of the state oil company PdVSA.
The following "dividing lines" between "bitcoin" and "petro" should also be distinguished: a) the first cryptocurrency is not regulated by governments, banks or investment funds; the second is regulated by the Venezuelan government; b) the former can be mined by anyone using computer resources, the latter - depending on the agreement between the miners, as the supply (100 million units of cryptocurrency) is limited by the government. In other words, in the case of "petro" there are established rules according to which neither the value of the cryptocurrency nor its offer can change discretely (separately).
In the context of the crisis and US financial sanctions, the Venezuelan government hopes to use "petro" for financing purposes, including debt payments, strengthening the economy, creating a currency alternative to the US dollar, launching a transparent digital economy "separated" from the world. financial system, where the dominant position is held by the USD, the transformation of Venezuela into a "sovereign global hub" as opposed to global financial centers. According to the regulator Libro Blanco, 55% of the proceeds from the sale of petro will be used by the government to replenish the country's sovereign wealth fund.
Petro's relative advantages also include the ability to covertly default on "normal markets", such as the sovereign securities market, but at the same time leave the door open for investors who believe that default will not affect them.
On the other hand, the success of the petro mining process requires the trust of producers (investors). The Venezuelan government is the issuer and is committed to the process, as the risks are high. Moreover, some international rating agencies (Standard & Poor's and Fitch) have declared a technical default of a number of Venezuelan legal entities (inability to pay interest on their debt obligations).
At the same time, in February 2018, NA declared "petro" an illegal cryptocurrency. Opposition MP economist H. Herra argued that "petro" is more like a government debt security, the emergence of which has a clear purpose - to avoid parliamentary control over the movement of public financial resources . In other words, the above characteristics of "petro" indicate, in general, the veiled function of this cryptocurrency - government lending.
H. Guaidó's strategy (period from January 2019 to December 2020).
It contained three stages (step-by-step actions): ending the usurpation of N. Maduro's power; formation of a transitional (temporary) government; holding democratic presidential elections, which must be certified by international observers, in particular from the OAS.
Inside the country, she focused on parliamentary approval of relevant legislation, including the appointment of Venezuelan diplomats in other countries and calls for mass street demonstrations (protests against Maduro).
Outside the country, both political and humanitarian support from the international democratic community and the effectiveness of tough US economic and personal sanctions against Maduro and his inner circle were expected.
The realism of the strategy was assessed differently by both Venezuelan experts and international experts. In general, there was a marked discrepancy in the assessments of the practical implementation of these successive steps. In the end, the failure of H. Guaydo's strategy was confirmed by time.
In this context, the following should be noted. An unsuccessful attempt to bring the military to the side of H. Guaidó on April 30, 2019 to remove Maduro from power by force showed that the crisis in Venezuela has intensified, compared to the period of political debate in the late 1990s - early 2000s, accompanied by polarization society. Another failure of the opposition leader also called into question his intention to hold early presidential elections in the country. Not without some intention, the leader of the left-wing populist party of Spain P. Iglesias remarked the following: the government of the Kingdom was wrong when it recognized H. Guaidó as acting President of Venezuela, and the Spanish Foreign Ministry allegedly confirmed this mistake "privately."
Venezuelan society was plunged into destructive processes amid the continuing escalation of political debates at the level of party leaders, while the public debate on the future of the country as a necessary condition for the realization of the citizen's right to free, conscious, democratic choice did not take place. The situation was slipping into a plane of uncertainty. In the event of the VP's victory over the PSUV, the ability of the former to develop state institutions, the economy, and the democratic system was seriously questioned.
As of September-October 2020, the opposition was represented by at least three types of parties and coalitions: twenty-seven associations committed to the ideas of H. Guaydo, who opposed participation in the December 2020 parliamentary elections; a group led by E. Capriles, which allowed to participate in the elections and, at the same time, hoped to increase pressure from the European Union to obtain "better conditions" for the expression of will or even the postponement of voting; "Pocket" opposition in the minority parties ("Democratic Action", "Progressive Progressive Party", "Change", etc.), which "bent" to certain agreements with Maduro.
The "anti-Chavists" (part of the opposition) found themselves in a state of noticeable internal differences, primarily over the issue of participation / non-participation in the NA elections (H. Guaidó / L. Lopez v. E. Capriles). Capriles' options were seen as the best on the surface: a possible institutional presence in the political arena, which would provide control over the actions of the executive and support from outside, including the European Union, where Spain once again insisted on negotiating a way out of the crisis and strongly rejected violent options. H. Guaidó's positions seemed rather losing because of the bet on non-participation in the elections against the background of the expected weakening of international support, primarily from the United States, although at that time D. Trump's defeat in the November (2020) presidential election did not look 100%.
Positions of major international players.
During Trump's presidency, the United States became the first country to recognize Guaydo as the new head of Venezuela, to promote its recognition by other countries as such, and to impose harsh sanctions on legal entities (including the state oil company PdVSA, oil refining and gold mining companies). , The National Development Bank, the Central Bank of Venezuela) and individuals who support Maduro; in particular, against the Minister of Foreign Affairs H. Arreasa, the governors of the states of Venezuela, who obstructed the receipt of humanitarian aid, the leadership of the armed forces, police and security, people close to Maduro and members of their families. The option of direct military intervention was voiced, which was denied by the European Union, the countries of the Lima Group and the International Contact Group.
In addition to the imposition of sanctions, important elements of US policy toward Venezuela were means of diplomatic influence: initiating discussions on the situation in this South American country within the UN Security Council, the OAS, and other regional organizations in the Western Hemisphere; removal of permanent representatives of N. Maduro from work in the OAS and the Inter-American Development Bank, their replacement by persons appointed by the National Assembly.
The situation in Venezuela has been repeatedly discussed in both chambers of the US Congress. It is noteworthy that on March 14, 2019, the diplomatic staff of the US Embassy in Caracas left the country and left for the United States.
Work was intensified with third countries in order to convince "skeptical countries" of the inexpediency of supporting the Maduro regime and the need to restore constitutional order in Venezuela and the country's transition to democracy. There has been an increase in contacts with Russia and China at the highest and highest levels on the "Venezuelan issue", as well as increasing pressure on Cuba due to the presence of Cuban instructors in Venezuela. At the same time, cooperation with the Caribbean states has been intensified to ensure their resilience to natural disasters, which should help increase support for H. Guaydo.
There was also an immediate response to the emergency socio-economic situation in Venezuela - the provision of humanitarian assistance: the placement of food and medicine on its borders with Brazil, Colombia, on the island. Curacao and others.
As early as April 2019, a number of experts expressed doubts about the success of the US strategy towards Venezuela . It was noted that the transition of the military leadership of the South American country to the side of the protesters was not observed, the imposed sanctions prompted N. Maduro to appeal for support from Russia, and the number of countries that recognized H. Guaydo as acting. president, almost did not increase. There were no signs of justifying US hopes for mass protests that would force Maduro to leave the country.
Despite the frequent statements of official factors regarding the analysis of a number of options, the US leadership did not agree on the need to use military force to overthrow Maduro. The prospect of the use of force was seen and voiced more as a means of psychological influence on the Venezuelan military leadership and personally on the formal head of state, given the potential threats to American citizens who were on Venezuelan territory.
In the face of delays in resolving the situation in Venezuela, the American side also worked out approaches to providing financial assistance to H. Guaydo to materially encourage the country's military leadership, intensified work with Russia, Cuba and China to reduce support for Maduro.
Imposition of sanctions against individuals and legal entities in Venezuela.
On February 15, 2019, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Treasury Department imposed personal sanctions on five Venezuelan citizens associated with an "illegitimate former president" [according to the official wording of the US Treasury Department] Maduro, who "continues to stifle democracy in Venezuela, is also involved in significant corruption and fraud against the Venezuelan people." These sanctions were imposed in pursuance of the US Presidential Executive Decree of March 8, 2015, "Blocking the ownership and suspension of entry of individuals involved in the situation in Venezuela."
Sanctions were imposed against the head of the Venezuelan National Intelligence Service (SEBIN), the first commissioner of the Venezuelan National Intelligence Service, the head of the General Directorate of Military Counterintelligence, the director of the Venezuelan National Police Special Operations Forces (FAES) and the "illegitimate" president of the Venezuelan Venezuelan state company.
The sanctions provide for the blocking of all property and shares in the property of such persons under US jurisdiction, including any companies owned directly or indirectly by the said sanctioned persons. In addition, U.S. individuals and entities are prohibited from engaging in any transactions with or without the sanction of individuals.
The American side emphasized that the imposed sanctions are aimed at changing the behavior of sanctioned persons. The US Treasury Department has sent a clear signal that the possibility of lifting the sanctions will be considered if the sanctioned take concrete and significant steps to restore democratic order in Venezuela, their refusal to participate in human rights abuses, protests against harassment by the Venezuelan government and fight corruption. in a South American country.
On March 11, 2019, the mentioned Office (OFAC) also imposed sanctions against the commercial bank of Moscow JSC JSCB "Eurofinance Mosnarbank", which is jointly owned by Russian and Venezuelan state companies.
The sanctions were imposed in pursuance of Presidential Decree № 13850, which provides for the application of US restrictions against foreign financial institutions that provide financial, material or technological support, including goods or services, to the Venezuelan state oil company PdVSA, which is included in the US sanctions lists on January 28, 2019, which functionally serves as a "liaison" in the scheme of spreading corruption and money laundering N. Maduro and his associates.
On January 13, 2020, the US State Department issued a statement  imposing sanctions on seven current and former Venezuelan officials for obstructing NA activities and actions related to the forcible seizure of the parliament building on January 5, 2020.
On March 26, 2020, the US Department of Justice accused Maduro and fourteen other current and former senior Venezuelan officials, including the Vice President, Secretary of Defense, and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, of committing crimes related to drug terrorism, corruption, drug trafficking, and other crimes. actions to be prosecuted .
Trump's harsh rhetoric against Maduro has fueled in some members of the Venezuelan opposition the thesis that Biden's victory would be more unfavorable for the South American country and its transition period. The conditional drawing of a parallel between the possible second term of Trump and the collapse of "Chavism", supported by right-wing political forces in the United States, Colombia and Venezuela, did not seem realistic.
Factors that, contrary to the predictions of the Trump administration and the expectations of the Venezuelan opposition, allowed the Maduro regime to stay in power include the low effectiveness of US risk policy towards Venezuela, which combined sanctions that exacerbated the humanitarian crisis with militant rhetoric. . Factors such as inconsistencies and disagreements among the Venezuelan opposition, which is likely to face internal corruption scandals, and a loss of confidence in H. Guaydo among the protesters, who had previously supported the opposition leader but were forced to join, were also significant.
On the other hand, the Maduro regime introduced a "win-win" project in domestic politics, which provides for virtually unhindered leaving the country dissatisfied with their socio-economic situation or lack of prospects for improvement, in particular in the field of health care . It should be noted that in Venezuela the functioning of the country's armed forces is "supervised" by twelve (!) Ministries, which is a plausible evidence of the merging of "secular" state power with the military sector in order to strengthen the regime.
Trump's strategy to restore democracy in Venezuela has failed. The main approaches of the new US administration, with the victory of Democrat J. Biden in the November 2020 presidential election, will obviously be closer to the position of the European Union and will be based on the need to establish a productive dialogue between Maduro and the opposition.
The new political-diplomatic approach of the Administration of US President J. Biden towards Venezuela is expected to be announced soon. However, it is possible that the ban on refinancing Venezuela's debts and their issuance through financial institutions located in the United States will remain for some time. At the same time, the main political actors in Venezuela, including the Chavists, who managed to withstand the pressure and threats of Trump, are close to believing that the key to a possible solution to the "Venezuelan question" lies in the White House.
There was a lack of consensus in the European Union between the European Parliament and the Council of Europe on the recognition of H. Guaidó as c. at. President of Venezuela. The main message in the Declarations of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, both F. Mogherini and H. Borrell, is the call to hold new elections in accordance with internationally recognized democratic standards.
The European Union did not recognize the December 6, 2020 elections and their results as free, inclusive or transparent due to the lack of a national agreement on the conditions of expression of will, political pluralism, non-compliance with international standards and exclusion of opposition leaders from the election process. Venezuela sees a way out of the impasse in reaching an urgent political solution with the participation of key political players who have to "make heavy commitments", ensure inclusive dialogue and negotiations that will focus on a free, inclusive and democratic process that would covered local, presidential and parliamentary elections .
The EU, despite its harsh criticism of Maduro, especially in the field of human rights , has consistently advocated dialogue and a negotiated solution to the crisis. Former President D. Trump has broken this axis, but US President J. Biden can renew it. The main stumbling block, I believe, is the chasm that has widened over at least the last two decades with an entrenched regime that is painfully receptive to international mediation, while withstanding rampant pressure and is unlikely to delay the approaching economic collapse. On the other hand, the opposition leadership, grouped around H. Guaidó, is still debating overcoming the loopholes of 2019, demanding an end to the usurpation of N. Maduro's power. However, such an impasse can be seen as a prerequisite for making adjustments to the negotiation strategy.
Previous talks between the opposition and the Chavists, including through the Holy See and Norway, are known to have failed. There is no clear position of the parties on the transition period, which could be discussed and agreed by mutual concessions, as was the case at one time, for example, in Chile.
The NA of the previous convocation (2015-2020) and the NA formed as a result of the rigged December 2020 elections are not recognized by the Council of Europe as the legislatures operating in Venezuela. The mandate of the former has ended, in accordance with the constitution, and its extension is not legally justified. Therefore, H. Guaidó, remaining at this time an influential leader of the opposition forces in Venezuela, can not be recognized as acting. President of the country, which, incidentally, in February 2019, publicly stated the Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine .
The fragmented Venezuelan opposition is currently adapting to the new situation in the country. He expects the new US administration to react to the events in Venezuela, which could trigger negotiations. At the same time, there are no signs of Venezuelan political actors' desire for fruitful negotiations, in the sense of their lack of flexibility in positions and unwillingness to seek compromise solutions.
In the framework of the meetings of the OAS Permanent Council during 2019-2020 were provided
assessments of the deepening political and institutional crisis in Venezuela and recommendations for its resolution: non-recognition of the legitimacy of the Maduro regime; mitigation of the situation of migrants and refugees from the country; providing humanitarian assistance to Venezuela; support for the submission to the International Criminal Court of the need to investigate crimes against humanity committed by the current authorities; condemnation of censorship, detention of journalists and attacks on them; violation by the Maduro regime of the immunities of deputies of the previous convocation (2015-2020); providing citizens with guarantees to ensure their right to protest and the need for a legislative ban on the militarization of the streets.
Significant among the decisions adopted is, in particular, resolution CP / RES.1123 (2215/19) of 27.03.2019 "Humanitarian assistance to Venezuela", presented by Colombia in co-authorship with Argentina, Brazil, Guatemala, Canada, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Chile and the United States. It is noteworthy that during the debate, representatives of Canada, the United States and Colombia (on behalf of the Lima countries) condemned Russia's actions to send military aircraft to Venezuela and demanded comments from a Russian observer present at the meeting. The "argument" of the latter ("implementation" of the Venezuelan-Russian agreement on military-technical cooperation of 2001) was skeptical by the majority of representatives from the OAS member states.
Also important is the resolution CP / Res.1143 (2269/20) of 10.01.2020 "On recent events in Venezuela", supported by twenty OAS countries. The document condemns the obstruction of the country's law enforcement agencies controlled by N. Maduro's admission of deputies to the NA's premises, attempts to disrupt the meeting and the procedure for electing the leadership of the parliament.
An analysis of the decision-making process within the OAS Permanent Council on the "Venezuelan issue" shows, among other things, a marked increase in differences between the states that support opposition leader H. Guaydo and the "skeptical countries". The majority (18-19 states) in the Organization is able to make any legal decisions, including on resonant issues that are not perceived by other countries that oppose (7-9 states) or abstain (5-7 countries). Such inconsistencies negatively affect the productivity and image of the OAS.
Following a meeting of the Advisory Body of the Inter-American Agreement on Mutual Assistance in 1947 (September 23, 2019, New York), a resolution was adopted at the level of foreign ministers of the parties defining multilateral measures in response to the escalation of the situation in Venezuela. The document was supported by sixteen countries party to the treaty (Argentina, the Bahamas, Brazil, Venezuela (represented by H. Guaidó), Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Colombia, Costa Rica, Panama, Panama, Panama). Chile), the representative of Uruguay opposed, Trinidad and Tobago - abstained.
Among the main measures provided for in the resolution are the following: identification of persons and companies associated with the Maduro regime, practicing money laundering, drug trafficking, promoting terrorism and its financing, related to transnational organized crime, involved in corruption or human rights violations. Purpose of the document: investigation, detention, criminal prosecution, extradition of responsible persons and freezing of their assets located in the member states of the agreement; establishment of operative communication between the units of financial investigations, security bodies of the states-parties of the agreement for strengthening of cooperation in the field of legal aid and judicial proceedings; instructing the Permanent Representatives of the States Parties to the Treaty to monitor the situation in Venezuela and its impact on the region in order to make appropriate recommendations.
With the adoption of the resolution in the Western Hemisphere, the number of states imposing sanctions on Maduro's entourage has increased significantly, as countries that have not imposed sanctions due to lack of relevant national legislation are also required to pursue sanctions and persecute those close to the current Venezuelan leader.
The Statement of Support for the Democracy Restoration Plan in Venezuela  published by the General Secretariat of the OAS on 31.03.2020 refers, among other things, to the immediate release of political prisoners, the resumption of institutions supported by the NA (2015-2020), the Supreme court, the withdrawal of all foreign agents of the security and intelligence forces, the mitigation of the dramatic humanitarian situation in which the vast majority of ordinary Venezuelans found themselves.
As a result of more than forty meetings of representatives of the Lima Group , statements were made at various levels calling for the restoration of democracy in Venezuela and the protection of human rights. At the same time, the position of the member states is not unanimous both on the consistency in the implementation of the process of return to democracy in Venezuela and on the means to achieve this goal. With the change of political leadership in a number of member countries of the Group (Bolivia, Mexico, Argentina, Panama), their positions on resolving the Venezuelan crisis were transformed.
In particular, after the December 2020 parliamentary elections, the Group emphasized in its Statement that they were organized by the "illegal regime" of N. Maduro, "are not legitimate because they were held without minimal guarantees of the democratic process" . The statement was not signed by the representatives of Argentina and Mexico.
In the Lima Group, Colombia (subgroup leader), Brazil, Bolivia, Canada and Chile are the most consistent in taking decisive action to restore democracy in Venezuela. Their proposals provoke opposition from the governments of a number of member states that are ideologically close to the Maduro regime. Moreover, in response to the second half of 2019, with the support of Russia and Cuba, he launched hybrid aggressions (attempts to interfere in national elections, provocations of civil conflicts, etc.) against Chile, Colombia, Bolivia and Ecuador. Relying on the support of the so-called. The Forum of São Paulo, founded in 1990 with the aim of reproducing a bloc of left-wing regimes in the region, uniting representatives of 111 center-left, left-populist and left-radical parties and movements, And, in the context of the increasing use of instruments of hybrid warfare deployed and supported by Russia, to prove the unfoundedness of the sanctions imposed on Venezuela.
The International Contact Group, ICG , has stated that its goal is to promote dialogue between the Venezuelan authorities and the opposition, "to promote understanding and joint action with key international players" in order to resolve the difficult situation in Venezuela. It is noteworthy that in the final Joint Statement (Montevideo, February 2019) and the Quito Declaration (Quito, March 2019), the IGC emphasized the need to ensure guarantees for a credible electoral process, the restoration of democracy and the constitutional order in Venezuela. , enabling urgent access of Venezuelan citizens to humanitarian aid. On the other hand, no IGC documents, including the February 2021 Joint Statement, contain provisions to prepare for Maduro's resignation.
Another criticism of Maduro in October 2020 against the Spanish government for its alleged assistance in L. Lopez's visit to Madrid, where the oppositionist's family lives, and where he was received by Prime Minister P. Sanchez, was to resonate. . However, back in September last year, official Madrid approved a decision to lower the level of diplomatic relations with official Caracas to the Chargé d'Affaires of the Kingdom in this South American country and provided reasoned comments on the absence of any "binding" of such a decision to the arrival of Venezuelan opposition. to Madrid. It should not be forgotten that a similar decision was made by Spain in early 2020 in relation to Bolivia, whose president E. Morales resigned amid mass protests in the country, which began after allegations by the authorities of rigging the presidential election in October 2019.
Thus, decisions (resolutions, joint statements, declarations) have been adopted at the level of the OAS, the Lima Group, the European Union and the International Contact Group over the last two years, calling for, inter alia, diplomatic, political, economic and financial measures to restoring the constitutional order and overcoming the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela.
The main components of the official position of Ukraine. At the beginning of 2019, the position of our state on the "Venezuelan issue" may have looked vague or even snobbish. However, time confirms its correctness.
One of the markers was the rejection of the anti-Ukrainian policy  of the Maduro regime and the domestic policy of his government, first of all the collapse of democracy, restriction of the rights and freedoms of citizens, impoverishment of a large population. Against the background of contradictory, ambiguous assessments, unpredictable in the short and medium term aggravation of the institutional crisis in Venezuela, the position of official Kyiv on the "Venezuelan issue" was thoroughly elaborated by the Foreign Ministry and, in accordance with the Basic Law of Ukraine.
In a nutshell, the official position of our state on this issue, which involved - among others - the author of the article, performing his functional duties as a diplomatic official, was reduced in the period from January 2019 to December 2020 to the following principles. . Maduro has lost his legitimacy and usurped power since January 10, 2019. We support the people of Venezuela in their quest to restore the rule of law and constitutional order in the country. We recognize H. Guaidó as the legitimate (until December 2020) Chairman of the Venezuelan National Assembly and leader of the democratic opposition. We support his efforts to hold transparent elections in Venezuela, which will be recognized by international observers, including the OAS, as fair and democratic. We call for all possible measures to be taken to prevent the resolution of the political and institutional crisis by force and to minimize the consequences of the deep economic crisis that led to the humanitarian catastrophe and significantly reduced the living standards of most Venezuelans.
Preference was given, first of all, to international legal, but not political aspects. The lack of legal grounds (or lack thereof) for recognizing the Speaker of Parliament as acting President of Venezuela was taken into account due to the following elements: a) continuing differences in the interpretation by the Supreme Court . 233 (on the exhaustive facts of the absence of the President; holding new general, direct and secret elections within thirty days; temporary performance of the duties of the President by the President of the NA or the Vice-President of the country); Art. 333 (on the obligation of any citizen to cooperate for the restoration of the Constitution); Art. 335 (on the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to interpret the norms and principles of the Basic Law); b) the decision of the NA of February 5, 2019 on the recognition of H. Guaidó c. at. the President of Venezuela, the usurpation of Maduro's rule, and the transitional order were overturned by the country's Supreme Court; c) free and competitive presidential elections have not been announced within the thirty days established by Art. 233
Constitution; d) the interim government was not formed, the cessation of the usurpation of N. Maduro's power was not achieved.
In the period from January 23, 2019 to January 6, 2021, Ukraine joined the statements of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy on the events in Venezuela. Official Kyiv also joined the US State Department's Statement "Basic Conditions for the Transition to Democracy in Venezuela" of June 2020. We support the provisions of the relevant statements (decisions) of the European Union, OAS, Lima Group and ICG, especially on overcoming the stalemate in Venezuela. achieving an urgent political solution, inclusive dialogue and negotiations aimed at ensuring a free and democratic process that includes local, presidential and parliamentary elections.
By the order of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine dated June 12, 2019 № 415-r "On Ukraine's voluntary contribution to the Organization of American States" , the allocated funds were initially offered by the domestic foreign ministry to support the international election observation mission in Venezuela. Subsequently, after agreements between the relevant authorities in Ukraine, as well as taking into account the recommendation from the OAS, the mentioned contribution was reoriented (September 2019) and sent to a project to study democracy in Venezuela.
In this way, official Kyiv expressed solidarity with the recommendations of the international conference on the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, held with the assistance of the OAS in Washington in February 2019, where leading donors such as Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom declared their readiness to provide financial assistance to Venezuela. The Netherlands and Taiwan.
Authoritative, as a consequence of the development of democratization processes, or an authoritarian model of public administration - the question remains rhetorical for a certain category of Ukrainian voters and for the majority of Venezuelans. Despite the obvious differences, in particular the natural-geographical, political, economic and socio-cultural, in which the former and the latter live and operate.
Whatever these differences may be, a cursory analysis of the table below with its comparative macroeconomic indicators, among other things, can serve as a guide to determine the peculiarities of the formation of political systems and instruments of government in both countries. In other words, this cursory analysis claims the role of a vision for defining the extent to which totalitarian and radical extremist ideologies promote denial of individual self-worth, restriction of rights and freedoms, total control over various spheres of personal self-realization, compared to universal ideologies the primacy of the value of the individual. However, a thorough analysis of these phenomena is beyond the scope of this article.
Thus, the index of economic freedom in Venezuela fell from 33.7 (2016) to 25.2 (2020) points; according to this indicator, the country has lost 34.6 points since 1995 and dropped to 32nd place among the countries of the Western Hemisphere, being in the category of "depressed" in the penultimate position of 179 in the world .
Ukraine's estimates for the entire period of compiling the "Index of Economic Freedom" are known to be as follows: 1995-2002 - "depressed"; 2003-2008 - "mostly not free"; 2009-2017 - "depressed"; 2018-2020 - "mostly not free".
Greater economic freedom, as evidenced by the practice of developed countries, is associated with more effective democratic governance and better rule of law.
The main macroeconomic indicators of Ukraine and Venezuela
Weighted average indicators
world weighted average
GDP dynamics (2017-2018)
weighted average: Western Hemisphere countries
weighted average: Western Hemisphere countries
Inflation rate,% (2018)
weighted average: Western Hemisphere countries, excluding Venezuela
Source: compiled by the author based on IMF data: WORLD ECONOMIC OUTLOOK for the relevant years. 2020_IndexofEconomicFreedom_Highlights.pdf [Electronic resource] / Access mode: https://www.heritage.org/index/pdf/2020/book/2020_IndexofEconomicFreedom_Highlights.pdf (accessed 29.07.2020).
The author does not claim to be an exhaustive analysis of the specifics of the problems raised in today's Venezuela. Here, the most convex, in my opinion, outlines of the issues related to the current political and institutional crisis in the mentioned state are sketched. A separate subject of study may be, in particular, the beliefs and ideas of different political groups, including values and cultural nature at the mental level of the individual, which have a significant impact on the development of domestic political conflicts, and not only in the mentioned South American country.
Volodymyr Krasilchuk, Candidate of Economic Sciences, Veteran of the Diplomatic Service of Ukraine, First Class Adviser
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- Формалізувала діяльність з підписанням у серпні 2017 р. «Декларації Ліма» представниками 12 країн Латинської Америки та Канади з метою пошуків мирного виходу з політичної кризи у Венесуелі. На сьогодні до Групи входять Аргентина, Бразилія, Болівія, Гайана, Гаїті, Гватемала, Гондурас, Канада, Колумбія, Коста-Ріка, Мексика, Панама, Парагвай, Перу, Сент-Люсія, Чилі та Венесуела (з лютого 2019) – прим. автора.
- S. Torrado, N. Galarraga Gortázar. El Grupo de Lima califica de «ilegítimos» los comicios legislativos en Venezuela. [Electronic resource]/ Mode of access: https://elpais.com/internacional/2020-12-07/el-grupo-de-lima-califica-de-ilegitimos-los-comicios-legislativos-en-venezuela.html Last access: 09.12.2020. – Title from the screen.
- Ініціаторами створення МГК у січні 2019 р. виступили міністри закордонних справ Іспанії, Франції, Італії, Португалії та Нідерландів. До складу групи, окрім зазначених країн, на сьогодні також входять Велика Британія, ФРН, Швеція, Євросоюз, Аргентина, Уругвай, Панама, Коста-Рика, Болівія, Еквадор, Домініканська Республіка та Чилі – прим. автора.
- Починаючи з березня 2014 р. венесуельська делегація постійно голосує проти суверенітету та територіальної цілісності нашої держави та проти всіх проєктів резолюцій, ініційованих українською стороною. З 2013 р. в українсько-венесуельських відносинах практично відсутні дипломатичні контакти. Ініційовані Києвом у 2017 р. спроби їхнього поновлення на рівні глав зовнішньополітичних відомств не були результативними. Відповідь венесуельської сторони щодо визначення терміну вручення вірчих грамот українським послом з резиденцією у Гавані за сумісництвом у Венесуелі не надійшла (2012 - 2013 рр.) – прим. автора.
- Кабінет Міністрів України. Розпорядження від 12 червня 2019 р. № 415-р «Про здійснення добровільного внеску України до Організації американських держав». Урядовий портал. [Електронний ресурс]/ Режим доступу: https://www.kmu.gov.ua/npas/pro-zdijsnennya-dobrovilnogo-vnesk-a120619 (дата звернення: 14.06.2019). – Назва з екрана.
- The Heritage Foundation|heritage.org/Index – Venezuela. – P. 470-471. [Electronic resource]/ Mode of access: https://www.heritage.org/index/pdf/2020/countries/venezuela.pdf Last access: 18.09.2020.