External Debt, According to Maduro

Maduro said that before temporarily suspending external debt, they need an “integral restructuring”. Yesterday, Venezuelans in Apure suffered a “new FARC terrorist attack” on a FANB checkpoint. After Maduro’s proposal to exchange oil for vaccines, Dr. Julio Castro said that the problem is political, not financial.

  • Maduro spoke in the Architecture of International Debt and Liquidity Forum organized by the UN. He said that before temporarily suspending external debt, they need an “integral restructuring”. 
    • Despite our poverty and inequality, Maduro criticized the failure of social protection systems in the most powerful economies in the world, which he tied to neoliberalism. He added that revising debt can’t become “a weapon for control and blackmail of people”. 
    • He asked for the end of sanctions but Maduro made Venezuela default its debt payments before the sanctions when we still produced oil and exported it to the U.S. Today, he lacks the legitimacy or trust to restructure it. 
  • Venezuelans in Apure suffered a “new FARC terrorist attack” on a FANB checkpoint this morning, said FundaRedes director Javier Tarazona. 
    • The Arauquita Mayorship reports that over 4,700 Venezuelans have been forcefully displaced to Colombia. 
    • The Colombian Border manager Lucas Gómez asked for help to raise 2 million dollars for humanitarian aid. Colombia will install an attention center for Venezuelan refugees in Arauca thanks to cooperation with the UNHCR. 
    • The Colombian Minister of Defense Diego Molano said that three criminal organizations operate in Venezuela: ELN, FARC dissidents and narcotalia, which is a group posting videos online, brandishing weapons and threatening to refound the guerrilla movement. 
    • Vladimir Padrino López, Maduro’s Defense Minister, said that the guerrillas in Apure were “cowardly” for their attacks. If only he’d capture them. 
  • Maduro’s Foreign minister Jorge Arreaza included promoting his conversation with Noam Chomsky on his Monday agenda, and told the public that Chomsky had said that “the U.S. doesn’t have the moral or legal authority to impose sanctions.” One decade ago, Chomsky condemned chavismo for the detention and torture of judge María Lourdes Afiuni. 
  • SAIME director Gustavo Vizcaíno explained that passports that have been extended already must be substituted with a new passport, which will have a ten-year validity. He asked to wait until April 15th to request an appointment. 
  • Portuguesa governor Rafael Calles said they’ll issue fines for the equivalent of ten dollars to people not wearing face masks in the state. 
  • After Maduro’s proposal to exchange oil for vaccines, Dr. Julio Castro said that the problem is political, not financial, because the 2015 AN already authorized the first payment for 18 million dollars and added that it’s a mistake to believe that anyone can buy vaccines because their availability is truly limited. 
  • Russia registered the Sputnik Light, a vaccine with just one dose, to help countries with higher infection rates to speed the immunization up. 
  • Health Minister Carlos Alvarado and Jorge Arreaza received a shipment of 50,000 doses of Sputnik V, with which they’d “start immunization for citizens over 60 years old,” said Alvarado. Healthcare workers are still waiting for it and they’re dying while they do so. 
  • Delcy Rodríguez reported 1,288 new cases yesterday, the day with the most cases since the pandemic began in March 2020. The highest number of cases reported by chavismo before this one, was on August 13th 2020, with 1,281 cases. Rodríguez also confirmed 12 deaths, the third day with the most deaths they’ve admitted to. Chavismo says there have been 157,943 cases in Venezuela in total. 
  • NGO Médicos Unidos de Venezuela reported 15 new deaths in the sector, 408 deaths in total until March 28th. Among them is Dr. José Ángel Maita, chief of surgery at the Razetti Hospital. 
  • Rodríguez said that the “second Russian vaccine EpiVacCorona will be arriving in Venezuela and was authorized, we’ll be doing some studies and they’ll be immediately used in the country.” So, which one is it? Was it authorized or will they run some studies? 
  • Russian vice-minister Yuri Borísov will arrive in Caracas on Tuesday, to strengthen relations with Maduro’s regime. His delegation is made up of high-ranking economic executives, Transport Ministry representatives and big Russian corporations that are participating in businesses with Venezuela. 
  • Colombian minister Diego Molano offered a COP 4,000,000 reward, over a million dollars, for information on FARC dissidents. 

On November 29th, 2020, Maduro said he had signed a contract with Russia for 10 million doses of Sputnik V, and that in the next 90 days they’d be vaccinating 10 million people. 90 days later, only 800,000 doses have arrived in the country, most of them Chinese. The worst part is that there’s no information on how and who’s been vaccinated. 

Naky Soto

Naky gets called Naibet at home and at the bank. She coordinates training programs for an NGO. She collects moments and turns them into words. She has more stories than freckles.