Borrell Explains the Political Issue with Chavismo
El Aissami threatens to expropriate gas stations that stay closed; Josep Borrell explains why there won't be an EU observation mission for the upcoming "elections"; more healthcare workers suffer from COVID-19
- Nicolás’s Communications minister, Freddy Ñañez tweeted on Sunday that there were 788 new cases of COVID-19 and four deaths in Venezuela, bringing the total to 78,434 cases and 653 deaths they’ve admitted to.
- According to official figures, they ran 7,930 tests from October 2nd to October 4th, with 1,614 cases of all days, which means a 20.35% positive rate: four times what the WHO says is okay to relax quarantine. Also, the WHO means PCR tests. In Venezuela the figures are mixed, the number of tests includes all kinds, even though the PCR tests are fewer and require labs, and the quick-response tests.
- In seven days, five healthcare workers have died of COVID-19, according to cases confirmed by Efecto Cocuyo between September, 28th and October, 4th: three doctors and two nurses in four states.
- “We’ll take over any station that doesn’t open,” warned from the Oil minister Tareck El Aissami. He added that “we’ll revoke the concesion” because they were all guaranteed supply. On Sunday, he said that 1,571 gas stations will be reactivated and that they must open at 6:00 a.m. Nicolás said that “a fair quantity of gas” had arrived to the country and it allows them to regularize supply, while saying that the gas shortage is because of sanctions imposed by the U.S., even though Venezuela has the largest oil reserves and refineries in the continent.
- On Sunday, Nicolás said that 60,000 people returned to the country via shortcuts and illegal passes (trochas) and that 10,000 have COVID-19. He said that it was part of a plan created by President Iván Duque to spread the pandemic in the country: “Trocherismo is a reality, but the health machine proved to be strong.” He was bold enough to deny accusations made by human rights NGO against the government for blaming returnees: “Some NGOs are paid by the CIA to say that we stigmatized Venezuelans who come back. But they don’t say anything about xenophobia in Peru, Chile, Ecuador, Brazil and Colombia,” he said.
- Nicolás asked the ANC to approve his Anti-Blockade Law as soon as possible: “I need it, we need it. I ask for an in-depth debate to fix whatever has to be fixed, but the law has to be debated soon. I’m asking for extraordinary help,” he said on Sunday. According to him, this law will reactivate the economy despite the sanctions imposed by the U.S. on Venezuelan officers tied to corruption schemes and human rights violations. But many experts warn that this law, in addition to being unconstitutional, will give more power to the Executive, allowing him to grant contracts without legislative authorization. That’s how they feel like they’ll cover the possibility of not having a National Assembly recognized by the democratic countries of the region.
- A new week of quarantine flexibilization starts on Monday and Nicolás announced that his sister and son are part of the 2,000 volunteers that will participate in the Sputnik V vaccine trial. He also said that a new Chinese vaccine trial will start, arriving in an experimental phase.
- The Venezuelan Teacher Federation and its 23 associated unions in the country condemned that the Labor Ministry hasn’t responded to their requests, the main point being that they don’t agree with the Education Ministry pushing for a mixed education system while there are no proper conditions. They say that they’re unwilling to tolerate the regime’s inefficiency or irresponsibility and they’ll hold a national protest today. Caretaker President Juan Guaidó reiterated his call to join this protest, which other unions will accompany too: “Protesting with teachers is protesting for the future of Venezuela, for the future of our children.”
- Juan Guaidó assured what has to be done to achieve the political transition in the country: “Strengthen unity, international pressure and the participation of the Armed Forces.” He reiterated that he hasn’t achieved a change of government because “we’re facing criminals that intend to remain in power using fire and using blood” and assured that Nicolás is kept in power by “the weapons” of the military elite.
- The European Minister for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell assured that things in Venezuela aren’t going well and that, with the “elections,” the country will stray from institutionalization even further, because there isn’t a minimum of democratic parameters: “It will be harder to find a democratic way out to the crisis, said Borrell. He said: “As requested by the opposition, I’ve been in contact with Maduro’s government since July to understand if they’re capable of allowing the opposition’s participation, which would be good. There wasn’t an agreement,” he said. He showed concern about the humanitarian situation in Venezuela: “This is the most severe humanitarian crisis of Venezuela and the international community doesn’t pay attention because they only see the political aspect of the matter.”
- Nine Venezuelan and Colombian citizens were rescued from a people trafficking network in Spain. Agents of the National Police announced ten criminals were detained in Alicante. The organization trafficked people for sexual exploitation and drug trafficking.
- The former secretary of Guaidó’s office, Roberto Marrero, was forced to leave the humanitarian flight on his way to Spain. As a beneficiary of Maduro’s “pardon” he was allowed to leave the country. However, he was forced to disembark the plane after he passed all controls in Maiquetía.
- Nicolás’s Foreign Ministry denounced fraudulent consular activities in Brazil, allegedly “done by people who try to usurp Venezuela’s legitimate consular service” The communiqué exposes that these people would be issuing fake documents done with the permission of President Jair Bolsonaro. Chavismo warned Venezuelan residents that those documents aren’t valid.
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