Following Sunday’s Vatican-sponsored peace talks, the Venezuelan opposition has presently postponed a political trial in congress seeking to declare Nicolas Maduro’s presidency void for violating the constitution. Activists and civic leaders wait for direction from opposition leaders about what the next move will be.
The current pause follows last week’s unrest where hundreds of thousands of people went on strike on Friday, following Wednesday’s protests in the capital Caracas, and surrounding areas. They demand the impeachment of President Nicolás Maduro who’s been in charge of the country since the death of Hugo Chavez in 2013.
The reason: the deepest crisis the country has ever faced.
Maduro is accused of throwing Venezuelans into poverty, due to poor economical choices and corruption. The opposition accuses him and the current administration of not diversifying the economic resources of Venezuela, of human rights violations, of censorship and lack of free media, and of massive shortages of food, medicine and basic goods.
Violence has risen to astronomical heights and Caracas is now the number one most dangerous city in the world with 119.87 murders per 100,000 people (According to World Atlas)
Adding to this disastrous economic and social situation is a regime crisis. While the opposition has a large majority of seats in the Parliament after the December 2015 victory, Maduro still controls the economy, the media and the military forces.
The best illustration of this political stalemate is the annulment by Maduro of the dismissal referendum scheduled for January 10. In this context, strikes and protest marches have taken center stage, although the tone of what will come next is still uncertain.
VENEZUELAN ACTIVISTS VISIT SAN DIEGO
In the midst of crisis, four Venezuelan activists and human rights defenders made their way to San Diego in early October for a visit administered by the San Diego Diplomacy Council and sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program.
During their visit to San Diego, the group met with NGOs, government officials and activists who work to increase civic engagement and reform the electoral process in the U.S.
The San Diego Diplomacy Council partnered with LIVE A GREAT STORY to elevate the voice of Daniel Fermin, a bright, brave and influential leader. Daniel Fermin is an activist, researcher and sociology professor, working and living in Caracas.
As LIVE seeks to inspire individuals to craft their own journey and make an impact, the vision complements the mission of the Council well. For the 37 years of the Council’s existence, powerful stories of emerging leaders living their great story have passed through the region. Now, through the power of new media and the LIVE team, these stories have the ability to be shared on a much wider platform.