Venezuela Gov’t and Opposition reach 99% consensus in dialogue

By Telesur English

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Jorge Arreaza

(TELESUR ENGLISH) – “We are in the best conditions to sign an agreement of coexistence with the opposition,” affirmed government representative Jorge Rodriguez.

Venezuelan Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez has insisted that the government delegation for dialogue with the opposition in the Dominican Republic is ready to finalize an agreement of coexistence on Monday, “which would be good news for all.”

He said both sides have reached consensus on 99 percent of the points under discussion.

“There have been many pressures and intentions to sabotage it,” he said in reference to U.S. interference.

Rodriguez pointed out that the behavior of the opposition’s leadership in the country has been erratic, as they have contradicted themselves in calls for elections that they later reject, as is now the case with the presidential elections scheduled before April 30.

Four opposition candidates have been approved by electoral authorities so far, and two more are being processed, he added.

Several days ago, President Nicolas Maduro announced that the government is ready to sign an agreement to promote peace and unity.

“I am ready to sign,” Maduro said. “I want peace. I am willing to unite everyone.”

On Saturday, former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero paid a visit to Venezuela to review the details of the agreement, a release from the Venezuelan government said.

Days earlier, the communications minister disclosed that a “pre-agreement” had been reached between the two sides.

“The road to an agreement with the Venezuelan opposition has been very long,” Rodriguez said.

Opposition representative Julio Borges stated that progress had been made during the talks, but acknowledged that other languishing issues needed to be resolved quickly.

“There is no agreement until everything is agreed upon,” Borges said.

The mediation sessions have been attended and observed by Dominican President Danilo Medina, Zapatero and international delegates from Chile, Bolivia, Nicaragua and St. Vicent and the Grenadines.

Maduro has urged the National Constituent Assembly and National Electoral Council to set a date for the upcoming presidential elections. The ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela, known as the PSUV, formally selected Maduro on Friday as its representative for the presidential election.

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