Venezuela: 17 Opposition Parties Meet with Presidential Commission for Constituent Assembly

A total of 17 opposition parties attend Monday at the Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, the meeting convened last week by the Presidential Commission for the Constituent Assembly, with the aim of discussing this process.

Political organizations such as Bandera Roja, Joven, Juan Bimba and Opina are some of those who joined this invitation, after the commission extended the call to all opposition parties of the country, including those who are part of the MUD.

At the beginning of the meeting, the president of this commission, Elias Jaua, said the space will nourish the debate and that the meeting is aimed at listening to the views of these political organizations.

“We thank to all those present for attending this invitation for the peace of our country and for listening. You will make your observations, your criticisms and your contributions, we will take note of them to feed the debate and the call made by President Nicolas Maduro,” Jaua said.

He added that this call will remain open to the different sectors of the country, regardless of their political and ideological position, with the purpose of building a space for peace based on the political and social stability of the country.

He reaffirmed that Maduro decided to make this call on the insistence of opposition sectors to keep a violent agenda. Also, the idea is to engage into a broad national dialogue of all sectors beyond top leadership’ ambitions.

The central issues raised for the debate in the Constituent Assembly are peace as a nation’s need, right and yearning; to improve the national economic system; to constitutionalize missions and great social missions as systems to protect the people; and to expand the powers of the justice system to eradicate impunity.

Likewise, it is proposed to discuss the constitutionalization of the new forms of participatory and protagonist democracy; defense of sovereignty and the integrity of the nation and protection from foreign interventionism; vindication of the pluricultural character of the homeland; guarantee of the future, by including a chapter on the rights of youth; and preservation of life on the planet.

The meeting also includes members of the Presidential Commission for the Constituent Assembly, including: Cilia Flores, Aristobulo Isturiz, Elvis Amoroso, Noheli Pocarretera, Reinaldo Muñoz, Earle Herrera, Adan Chavez, lris Varela, Isaias Rodríguez and Remigio Ceballos.

It was last week when President Maduro called a constituent process, in use of its powers established in the Constitution of the Republic.

This call is a response of the head of state to the violent actions that have been held between April and May this year, after calls for demonstrations by right-wing sectors, resulting in 35 people dead, more than 700 injured and economic losses for the public and private sectors.

Maduro regrets absence of prelates of catholic church at constituent debate

Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro regretted Monday that high-ranking church officials of the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference and parties of the opposition coalition MUD declined to participate in the dialogue and debate of the new constituent process.

In statements to state media, he thanked the various religious leaders, priests, pastors, muslims and members of the Federation of Ancestral Religious people, as well as the 18 opposition parties that attended the meeting convened last week by the Presidential Commission for the Constituent Assembly, with the aim of discussing this process.

“I thank all the sectors that have come to the wide call, those who did not want to come to talk is because they did not want to, it is perplexing that they were officially invited to dialogue, to exchange ideas and then say: we do not want to dialogue, that was what the Episcopal Conference of the Catholic Church said.”

He also regretted that members of the MUD rejected to talk and keep on calling to continue street actions resulting in the activation of clashes and violent acts aimed at attacking and destroying public and private properties, as part of a coup plot.

So the President reaffirmed his commitment to dialogue with all sectors, especially about the constituent process, to strengthen peace in the country and develop the new economic and social reorganization lines of the nation.

The Constituent Assembly is “the immense door that we are opening to attend all the affairs of our country to renew the constituent force of 1999, to expand it, to improve everything that has to be improved, to change everything that has to be changed, to make the revolution within the revolution in a new stage of greater maturity, of the economic, spiritual, moral, social life,” he stressed.