Venezuela talks suspended in Mexico City

September 25, 2021 GMT

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The latest round of negotiations between Venezuela’s government and the country’s opposition were suspended Friday when the government’s delegates failed to appear in Mexico City.

Two sources tied to the process confirmed that the first session of this round of talks had been suspended. They hoped to resume Saturday if the government’s delegates arrived.

This round of meetings was scheduled to begin Friday and run through Monday. The previous meetings occurred Sept. 3-6. The talks are being mediated by Norway and hosted by Mexico.

The government delegation had not provided a reason for its absence late Friday. The opposition delegates confirmed in a statement that the government side had not arrived, but they planned to continue participating with the agreed upon framework.

The delegates of President Nicolás Maduro and the opposition, led by Juan Guaidó, have been expected to tackle issues such as conditions for elections and the lifting of foreign economic sanctions imposed on the government. Guaidó said Friday he would remain in Mexico to try to advance a range of issues.

The U.S. and other countries withdrew recognition of Maduro after accusing him of rigging his most recent reelection as president. In his place, they recognized Guaidó, who was head of the then-opposition-dominated congress.

Maduro had just been in Mexico last weekend for a meeting of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States.