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U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken´s speech at the 51st Conference of the Americas left no doubt that despite previous campaign promises, the Biden administration seems to follow his predecessor and remains bent on a confrontational course with countries in the region, such as Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela.
The Biden administration, only three months into its first year, seems bent on following up on Trump´s aggressive policies in the region against countries that will not nod approvingly to their lead. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Tuesday that the U.S. "will continue to pressure the Venezuelan government to return the country to democracy.
"We will continue to work with our partners across the region, both to alleviate the suffering of the Venezuelan people and to exert pressure on the regime so the country can peacefully return to democracy," Blinken said at the 51st Conference on the Americas. Blinken went past the usual rhetoric and claimed that Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's government had mismanaged the health crisis in the country.
The secretary did not limit his speech to the Venezuelan topic, adding that the U.S. will also continue advocating for the human rights of the Cuban people, including the right to freedom of expression and assembly, and condemn the repression of human rights.
Blinken called on the U.S. partners in the region to urge the government of Haiti to organize free and fair elections by the end of this year and the government of Nicaragua to reform its electoral system.
Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has consistently denied U.S. allegations and accuses Washington of attempting to overthrow the Venezuelan government to seize the country's natural resources. According to a 2019 study co-authored by renowned economist Jeffrey Sachs, U.S. sanctions have killed tens of thousands of Venezuelans.