The white liquiliqui made the bags under Nicolas’ eyes stand out even more during the event commemorating the naval battle of Lake Maracaibo..but in Mamo, Vargas State, yet another excuse to talk about his Constituyente.

It’s hard to measure the success of messages of glory and freedom when Plan República soldiers tore off protest signs from yesterday’s pancartazo in several schools, those threatening pieces of paper were treated like enemies in a high-risk mission that proved their military might.

The PNB showed its skill by preventing the Piloneras (a group of musicians dedicated to peaceful protest) from singing in the Metro. Lastly, the National Guard fired tear-gas during a homage held yesterday afternoon for those murdered in protests, for no apparent reason.

And the Commander of the Navy had the gall to label dissidents as ignominious traitors while praising Nicolás.

Military tribunal

A report made by Transparencia Venezuela says that almost 400 civilians have been prosecuted by military tribunals during protests. Yesterday, it was Justice Ángel Zerpa’s turn, arbitrarily arrested by SEBIN and presented before Fuerte Tiuna’s First Tribunal of Military Control, where he was denied the right to a private defense. The justice rejected the imposition of a public defender and assumed his own defense, but he was sentenced to prison anyway and in view of this, he began a hunger strike.

Another of the government’s discretionary tools against dissidents is invalidating passports whose holders never reported as lost. Yesterday, Saime applied it against lawmaker Carlos Berrizbeitia, who was in charge of announcing the appointment of the new justices last Friday.

Encouraging

Chief justice Maikel Moreno sent a message to court employees across the country as a means to pressure them to vote next Sunday, using terms such as loyalty and obligation with threats and promises. The elegant document reads:

“The most important elections of our republican history will take place on July 30th. This will be a before and after that will establish the country’s absolute sovereignty (…) it is your national duty to vote (…) the trust and loyalty that I have placed on you must be firmly expressed that day.”

I think I’m gonna be sick.

The mediator

Chilean newspaper La Tercera interviewed former president and mediator José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, who claimed that:

“There’s no alternative to dialogue and the search for an agreement. Any alternative is a serious conflict.”

He said that despite the difficulties (a term he uses to summarize all of Nicolás’ threats, refusals and abuses,) pending electoral proceedings would take place: gubernatorial elections in December this year, and presidential elections in 2018. He didn’t mention the people killed, wounded and arrested during protests, he said that releasing political prisoners is crucial in the dialogue process’ roadmap. Sadly, Zapatero’s such a lousy mediator that he didn’t even demand respect for the Constitution.

A referendum for the Constituyente would reveal the obvious minority that seeks to “reorganize the State” against the people’s will.

At Leopoldo’s

Theories ran amok yesterday regarding Zapatero’s presence in the country, enough for lawmaker Freddy Guevara to post a briefing on Twitter on the meeting held with the former president at Leopoldo López’s house.

The lawmaker detailed their demands: “the constituent assembly’s suspension and respect for people’s decision on July 16th,” saying that they discussed the conflict posed by the Constituyente and asking the regime to have the sense to cancel it. “The street is our strength,” Guevara wrote before ratifying, on behalf of Leopoldo and the MUD, the agenda for the week.

The Constituyente’s potential cancellation doesn’t change the demands that caused these protests: the restitution of constitutional order, respect for the National Assembly and its authority, the release of political prisoners, free and democratic elections and the opening of a humanitarian channel.

Abroad

While the FARC announced that they’ll launch their legitimate political party on September 1st, Foreign minister Samuel Moncada claimed that CIA chief Mike Pompeo “is working with Colombia and Mexico to overthrow the Venezuelan government.” Colombia’s Foreign Ministry responded to the accusation with a communiqué in which they state that their only interest is for Venezuelans to find “a negotiated and peaceful solution to the current crisis,” saying that they’ve been working for a negotiated agreement.

The OAS ratified the call for a meeting to discuss the “Situation of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela” on Wednesday 26th.

Chilean Foreign minister Heraldo Muñoz said that he hoped the Constituyente will be cancelled and replaced by a dialogue with a believable political consensus.

Additionally, Paraguay’s Foreign minister Eladio Loizaga spoke about Venezuela and said that “there’s a rupture of democratic process, violations against human rights, the rights to free speech and protest” and that he hopes the Venezuelan government will respond to Mercosur’s notice.

 

PSUV has gone to great lengths to show us their proclivity to break promises, so it’s understandable that many would be angry at the mention of any negotiation. Chavismo should be making the greatest concessions in a negotiation and none of their statements points to that possibility, so any of Zapatero’s offers come with the regime’s approval, they’re not the product of his authority or creativity.

When you can, read the beautiful piece by the New York Times regarding how their correspondent Nick Casey was barred from entering the country.

We go on.

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