"We’re betting on peace for a concerted effort; Venezuelans are not going to allow the country to miss this opportunity for dialogue."
Claudio Fermin, leader of the ‘Soluciones Para Venezuela’ opposition party, railed against lawmaker Juan Guaido, accusing him of wasting the opportunity for peace talks. Fermin also addressed sanctions, attacking them as an enemy of peace and economic recovery.
The comments were made on Monday to reporters following the signing of wide-ranging peace agreements between the government and some opposition party leaders. Soluciones was amongst those signing the accords.
"We’re betting on peace for a concerted effort; Venezuelans are not going to allow the country to miss this opportunity for dialogue," Said Fermin to journalists after giving his signature to the agreement.
Fermin then criticised lawmaker Juan Guaido saying, “The deputy Juan Guaidó, as we have witnessed, has had an extraordinary opportunity with the dialogues in Norway (…) instead, what does he propose? Violence? Crossing his arms? Surrender to the will of external forces?”
On the issue of U.S. economic sanctions on Venezuela, he added, "The reactivation of the productive apparatus [of the economy] is a priority, and the sanctions are an antinomy, a stab in the back of the productive system and we reject them, protest them and ask that they be lifted."
The agreements signed by the government and the parts of the opposition take a number of important steps. They include the reentry of the ruling PSUV into the opposition controlled National Assembly, a new electoral court, a release of some prisoners, an agreement that all signatories condemn U.S. sanctions.
The agreements were hailed by Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez as “a huge step in the consolidation of peace in Venezuela", due to the fact that numerous opposition parties signed up to the accords. The opposition signatures include ; Felipe Mujica, MAS, Claudio Fermín, Soluciones Para Venezuela, Luis Romero, Avanzada Progresista, Pedro Veliz, Bandera Roja, Timoteo Zambrano, Cambiemos.
Representatives of Government and opposition parties take official photo. They are standing together for Venezuela's sovereignty and peace, and assuming all risks in breaking with the pro-violence, pro-imperialist warmongering rhetoric of Juan Guaidó and co-conspirators. pic.twitter.com/zAW7uFiKWi— Camila (@camilateleSUR) September 16, 2019
The agreements show that there is increasing tensions between those sections of the opposition who believe in peace and economic recovery, and those around Juan Guaido who support sanctions, destablization, and U.S. interference.