Russian and Iranian foreign ministers say they are committed to helping Venezuela’s government and opposition “find mutual understanding.”
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Yavad Zarif held a Tuesday phone conversation in which they discussed “the current situation in Venezuela," and their shared dedication to a peacefully resolution for the South American nation.
The two ministers expressed their willingness to "contribute, based on the principles of the UN Charter, to the efforts of the international community to find mutual understanding among the responsible political forces of Venezuela in the interest of ensuring internal peace," according to Russia’s foreign ministry website.
Lavrov and Zarif also want to help bring about a prompt “solution of pressing social and economic objectives" in Venezuela.
The two high-ranking officials also discussed bilateral agreements.
The discussion between the two senior authorities of Russian and Iran is a drastically different tenor towards Venezuela than the one adopted by the United States, which has been waging a soft coup against the Nicolas Maduro administration since U.S. President Trump took office in 2017.
In an effort to over Maduro, Trump has decreed over 20 sanctions against the Venezuelan government and individuals. As late as last week the White House began trying to criminalize the Russian oil company, Rosneft, for doing business with Venezuela’s U.S.-sanctioned oil company Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA). The two state-owned oil companies already hold a joint venture in which Russia's Rosneft buys PDVSA oil to sell to other countries in the region.
At a Monday OPEC meeting, PDVSA President Manuel Quevedo said the company may shift oil originally bound for the U.S. to supply Rosneft. Quevedo said at the Azerbaijan meeting that Caracas would decide where to ship its oil and that its main goal was to strengthen ties with Russia, according to Reuters.
The Venezuelan economy has directly lost as much as US$38 billion from Washington's sanctions alone, according to its government.