Dahal statement on Venezuela political crisis a ‘slip’: PM Oli

Venezuela political crisis, K P Sharma Oli, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Nepal

KATHMANDU, Feb 7: Prime Minister and Nepal Communist Party co-chair K P Sharma Oli has termed Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’’s comment on Venezuela political crisis a ‘slip’ that should not be made an ‘issue’.

After the United States decided to give recognition to Juan Guaido—who on January 23 proclaimed himself as the interim president setting up a tense standoff with current president Nicolas Maduro– as the leader of Venezuela, Dahal issued a press statement denouncing the moves of the US and its allies as “unacceptable intrusion in internal affairs and an attempt of imperialist coup’.

“Prachanda should not have rushed to issue a comment on Venezuelan political crisis. It wasn’t an issue we would have to speak about. Those were unnecessary words,” said the prime minister in a program Janata Sanga Pradhanmantri broadcast on Nepal Television.

Following the Dahal’s statements, the US had inquired if Dahal’s statement was the official position of the Nepal government. Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) later in a release stated that “the internal political problems of Venezuela need to be resolved within its constitutional parameters in a democratic manner, free from external interference.”  However, the US officials described MoFA’s statement as continuation of Dahal’s previous statement saying it failed to clear any air of confusions.

“The US should not be annoyed by such slip and insignificant comments,” added PM Oli.

“We have clear international affairs policies. We’d have held fast to our policy if I was here.”

“This would not have been the case if I was in the country,” said Oli who was in Davos, Switzerland to attend the 49th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (January 22 to 25).

40 countries, including the US and 21 European Union nations have officially given their support to opposition leader Guaido after President Maduro rejected an ultimatum to call early voting.

Guaido is trying to force Maduro–who has been labeled a dictator by the West and the Latin American neighbors after presiding over Venezuela’s economic collapse—from power aiming to set up a transitional government and hold new presidential elections.

Maduro is supported by Russia, China, Turkey, Cuba and Iran.

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