- Former secretary of defense Mark Esper revealed that during Trump’s last year in office, he blocked military actions against Venezuela. “At various times, certainly during the last year of the administration, folks in the White House were proposing to take military action against Venezuela, to strike Iran…” he said in a “60 minutes” interview. Oh, well.
- On Monday, the chief of the EU delegation Rafael Dochao Moreno, talked about his conversation with Maduro’s foreign minister, Félix Plasencia, and said that conversations have to be between and for Venezuelans and that diplomatic work is done quietly. He supported the dialogue with international observers. He highlighted that there’s a shift in the EU’s vision on Venezuela, including the need to strengthen diplomatic ties to release the potential achievement of holding free and fair elections.
- Keta Stephany and Ricardo Cusanno, members of Foro Cívico, insisted that the negotiation must prioritize the humanitarian emergency and that there are agreements that must be made before free elections and re-institutionalization regarding health, education, and food supply. They demanded a mechanism to include other groups in the dialogue. Cusanno said that before political change, social and economic problems must be tackled. He said the country needs “early victories” that improve quality of life.
- Diosdado Cabello said that the last round of dialogue with the U.S. in Trinidad and Tobago “is a great victory” for chavismo, trolling US authorities who denied this meeting would take place. Cabello also assured it wasn’t chavismo who left the negotiation table in Mexico. He demanded that Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela be included in the Summit of the Americas, which will take place in June, and accused Baltazar Porras of “going to Miami to ask for stronger sanctions.”
The Venezuelan Central Bank reported a 4.4% inflation rate for April and imposed a new record-breaking figure in currency exchange intervention this week.
- They sold $117 million and €25 million to banks, in order to contain the increasing exchange rate, which is even more visible in the black market. With this operation, the BCV has injected $1,474 million so far this year. It’s a lot of money used to keep the price of foreign currency artificially low.
- Fedeagro said that Venezuela doesn’t even produce one-third of the coffee that Colombia does, contradicting what Maduro said. “Production in Venezuela has decreased by around 500 to 600 thousand quintals. Maduro spoke of around 17 quintals per hectare, but the average is 4 to 5. The hectare producing more coffee is able to produce 9 quintals, no more, “said Fedeagro president Celso Fantinel.
- Thirteen days after Tania D’Amelio left her post in the National Electoral Council (CNE) to become a justice on the Supreme Tribunal of Justice, she hasn’t been replaced on the CNE board.
- On Monday, journalist Roland Carreño had his first hearing. It lasted five minutes. Lawyer Ana Leonor Acosta emphasized that he’s being “criminalized for being a member of a political party and charged because of his ideology.”
- The family of José Pereira, political prisoner and CITGO executive in El Helicoide, denounced that his health has severely deteriorated. James Story demanded the release of all CITGO executives that have been in prison for four and a half years.
- PDVSA had a new setback with its assets. The Hague district court ruled that PDVSA is responsible for the debt of its subsidiaries, in this case, Bariven, for around 5 million dollars and they’re demanding similar rulings for over 50 million dollars, tweeted José Ignacio Hernández. The regime chose the legal team defending the case.
- Italo Atencio, ANSA president, said that the supermarket network needs around 40 more days to be able to apply the tax on large financial transactions, because they don’t have the machines to process it.
- Venezuelan gymnast Luiselena Rodríguez Bastidas, who’s only 15 years old, won first place in the National Gymnastics Competition in the U.S. this weekend.
- Vladimir Putin justified his attack on Ukraine as the “only possible decision, the right one” in his Victory Day speech celebrating 77 years of the Nazis’ defeat. Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy compared Putin with Hitler. Russia launched a missile attack in Odessa while the president of the European Council Charles Michel was there.
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