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article imageVenezuela's political crisis talks 'not working,' says Guaido

By AFP     Aug 28, 2019 in World

Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido admitted on Wednesday that talks with the government of President Nicolas Maduro aimed a resolving the country's political crisis "aren't working."

Talks mediated by Norway first took place in May in Oslo with several subsequent rounds in Barbados.

But Maduro called off the discussions three weeks ago in response to new US sanctions against his government.

The two sides are deadlocked with Guaido, who sparked the crisis by declaring himself acting president in January, demanding Maduro's resignation and the government insisting the United States lift sanctions that it blames for the country's crippled economy.

"At the moment there's no date to restart the mechanism mediated by the kingdom of Norway until we achieve something concrete to approach a solution," said Guaido.

He said that if the government is using the talks simply to boost its image "that serves no purpose for the Venezuelan people."

Guaido supports the sanctions that target the regime as he hopes they will put pressure on Maduro to step down and call new elections.

The US -- one of more than 50 countries to recognize Guaido as interim president -- stepped up sanctions in April by targeting state oil company PDVSA, on whose revenues the country is almost entirely dependent.

In addition to the political standoff, Venezuela is suffering one of the worst economic crises in its history with a quarter of its 30 million population in need of aid, according to the United Nations.

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