US Condemns Arrest Of 2 Venezuelan Opposition Leaders: Plans To Pressure President Maduro To Step Down
The United States government just condemned the arrest of two Venezuelan opposition leaders which they described as very alarming. It can be recalled that Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma were taken to a military prison last Tuesday after having undergone house arrest.
Because of this current crisis in Venezuela, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that the government is evaluating all the policy options and this includes putting pressure on President Nicolas Maduro for him to step down. This started with the controversial vote for a constitutional assembly which also resulted in a deadly violence.
During the deadly violence, BBC reported that at least 10 people were killed because the opposition also did not agree with the election and ended up boycotting it. However, Venezuelan President Maduro said that the election was a vote for the revolution and this would create peace and enhance dialogue through uniting the different sectors of the polarized society.
But the opposition had something in mind and accused President Maduro of attempting to change the constitution for his power to be maximized. Moreover, if this will happen, the president will have the ability to sideline the legislature controlled by the opposition.
Aside from the United States, the United Nations also released statements regarding the crisis in Venezuela. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres shared that the worsening of political tensions will make it hard to devise ways to end the crisis. Further, the country's Defense Minister also said that the army still has its unconditional support to the president.
Meanwhile, Mr. Tillerson further shared that evaluation of policy options will help them think of ways to create a change of conditions where either President Maduro decides to step down or to return the processes of the Venezuelan government back to their constitution.
With this, the US reiterated that they stand with the Venezuelan people and calling for the full and unconditional release of the political prisoners in the said country. In addition, the US is also supporting fair and free elections, respect for human rights, and restoration of the national assembly.