Lima Group Tells Venezuela's Maduro Not To Take 'Illegitimate' Oath Of Office

Jan 5, 2019

Next week Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro will be sworn in after a re-election much of the international community considered a sham. But a group of Latin American countries on Friday told Maduro they won’t recognize his new term in office.

Last year Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro shut down his country’s opposition-led National Assembly and illegally created a new legislature. This year that body made its own unconstitutional move by calling an early presidential election that gave Maduro a second, six-year term.

Critics say Maduro as a result has turned Venezuela into a socialist dictatorship. In Peru, a bloc of 14 western hemisphere countries known as the Lima Group all but agreed with that assessment. And all but one of its members said they won’t recognize the legitimacy of Maduro’s new presidency.

They instead called on Maduro not to take the oath of office next Thursday; to restore Venezuela’s National Assembly – and give it provisional power until a new, constitutional presidential election can be held.

The Lima Group members who signed the statement included major Latin American countries like Brazil, Argentina and Colombia, as well as Canada. Mexico did not take part in the meeting.