Venezuela's Maduro Agrees to Meet Opposition

World | April 8, 2014, Tuesday // 12:11|  views

Venezuela President, Nicolas Maduro (R), says goodbye to Bolivian Chancellor, David Choquehuanca (L), after a meeting with Chancellors of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur), at Miraflores palace, Caracas, Venezuela. Photo by EPA/BGNES

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro agreed to meet opposition leaders, after weeks of violent street protests.

The talks, which are expected to put an end to the wave of unrest which has left 39 people dead, will be held Tuesday in Venezuela's capital Caracas.

They will be brokered by Unasur, a South American regional group, which has sent Foreign Ministers to Caracas.

In a meeting which lasted more than an hour, Maduro told top diplomats of Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Bolivia and other states that the negotiations process is needed "to heal the wounds" which street barricades and what the President described as a "coup attempt" have left behind.

Maduro insists that eight-week-long demonstrations demanding improvements to safety and plummeting living standards in Venezuela were part of a coup plot against the government carried out by "fascists" and backed by the United States.

Venezuela's head of state also underscored that he had been pushing to kick off dialogue with protesters and opposition representatives "for the past eight weeks", as Spanish news agency EFE quoted him.

He showed readiness to start talks "for peace, for democracy". The opposition is yet to give its response to the proposition for dialogue.

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Tags: UNASUR, nicolas maduro, Maduro, Venezuela, protests, opposition


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