Venezuelan conciliation talks undermined by EU: FM

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-19 13:19:04|Editor: Liu
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CARACAS, July 18 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza Thursday accused the European Union (EU) of undermining the conciliation talks between his government and his country's far-right opposition.

"European Union institutions are determined to disrupt and trying to destroy the process of dialogue in Venezuela," Arreaza said on Twitter.

"They do not respect sovereignty or the right to peace," he said, citing alleged interference first by the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini and then by the European Parliament.

Earlier this week, Mogherini warned that the EU would stiffen sanctions against Venezuela if there was no "concrete progress" in the talks between the government of President Nicolas Maduro and the opposition.

On Thursday, the European Parliament called on member countries in a statement to impose additional sanctions against Venezuelan authorities "responsible for human rights violations and repression."

The motion was approved with 455 votes in favor, 85 votes against and 105 abstentions.

Arreaza called on the EU to respect the dialogue process, which was renewed in May with Norway acting as a mediator.

The most recent round of talks took place at the beginning of the week in the Caribbean nation of Barbados.

The political deadlock between the Venezuelan government and the opposition-controlled National Assembly reached a critical point in January, after opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself interim president and was immediately recognized by the United States and some other countries.