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Reimagine the Sanctions of US & EU

Venezuela, three years after the US, EU and others increased individual and broad financial and economic efforts with trade sanctions, the question arises: what now?

by Maibort Petit

Chatham House, a think tank in the United Kingdom, with the support of the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development ( FUNGLODE ) will hold a meeting in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic on December 8 and 9, 2022, where officials from the Nicolás Maduro regime, of Juan Guaidó's interim, representatives of the George Soros Foundation, Open Society, former presidents of the Left, as well as officials of the Joe Biden Administration, and representatives of investment funds. The intention is to 'reimagine' the sanctions that the US and the international community imposed on the elite of the Venezuelan dictatorship, and state companies for the systematic violation of the people's human rights, and the anti-democratic practices of Chavismo.

The following characters appear on the event agenda, among others:

Former Presidents: Ernesto Samper (Colombia) and Leonel Fernández (Dominican Republic)

Those joining talks on venezuelan sanctions

Interim Government of Juan Guaidó: Miguel Pizarro, and the Ex-CEO of CITGO, Luisa Palacios. Deputy of the National Assembly (2015) Mariela Magallanes. Isadora Zubillaga, representative of Guaidó in Europe.

American Society: Guillermo Zubillaga

at talks on venezuela human rights

Joe Biden Administration USA: Juan González, Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Relations, National Security Council, United States [Guest]

US Senate Brandon Yoder, Professional Staff Member Senate Foreign Relations Committee, United States [Guest]

Financial Times: President Michael Stott, Editor for Latin America

Businessman (Venezuela): Alberto Völlmer of Ron Santa Teresa.

Chatham House: Dr. Christopher Sabatini, Senior Investigator.

Speakers Francisco Cox, UN Fact-Finding Mission, Chile

Tamara Taraciuk Broner, Human Rights Watch Keith Mines, US Institute for Peace.

Enrique Yturriaga Saldana, General Director for Latin America and the Caribbean of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Spain.

James Dauris, Head, Latin America, UK Foreign Relations, Commonwealth and Development Office. [Guest]

President Sarah Renouf, Deputy Head of Mission in Colombia, New Zealand

Alez Wetzig, Secretary General of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Chile

Representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mexico [TBD]

President Louis-Pierre Emond, Global Affairs Canada

President Dr. Elena Lazarou, Head, Foreign Policy Unit, European Parliament

Speakers Miguel Pizarro, representative of the Interim Government of Venezuela before the United Nations (Juan Guaidó)

Martín Carosio, LATAM Institutional and Commercial Relations Manager / Legal Business Partner, Aggreko [Guest]

President Sabrina Stein, Senior Advocacy Program Analyst, Latin America Program, Open Society Foundation

Expanding the discussions on the path towards the restoration of Fundamental Rights and Democracy in Venezuela.

To help facilitate open discussion and the exchange of ideas, this workshop will be held under the Chatham House Rule.

This is the agenda dated November 18, 2022. (Linear transcription of the document)

This event will be held in person at the headquarters of the Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE*). Selected sessions will take place on the Zoom virtual platform, but for privacy reasons not all. Please note that all times listed are in East Coast Winter Time [EST].

The following objectives and issues will be the focus of the discussions and any potential points of consensus, emerging from the two-day meeting.

• Reimagining the nature of US and international sanctions and their potential to promote progress in negotiations, human rights in Venezuela, and peaceful change.

• The importance of private investors to create transparency and participate in the delivery of humanitarian aid in Venezuela, as well as in the rehabilitation of critical electricity and energy sectors to support access to health, drinking water and education.

• European Union commitments to engage and promote conditions for free and fair elections in the run up to 2024 and 2025

• Secure official authorization for the major international human rights organizations to carry out a visit to independently monitor conditions inside Venezuela and the progress of judicial reforms initiated by the current government.


• What emphasis should be placed on fundamental human rights and humanitarian assistance?

• What is the best way to address the electoral conditions for the 2024/2025 elections to meet the EU requirements? Recommendation of your 2021 observation mission report?

• What should be the role of the international community, including newly elected governments in Latin America?

What do we think the role of sanctions should be?

The effectiveness and enforcement of sanctions has long been questioned, but has only recently become a major public debate. In the case of Venezuela, three years after the US, EU and others increased individual and broad financial and economic efforts with trade sanctions, the question arises: what now? In this session he will discuss whether the sanctions themselves, as currently in place, are likely to induce the original goals that the countries that imposed them had in 2019.

• How can the penalties be better understood in terms of the potential to change the current deadlock?

• How can countries that impose sanctions promote gradual change?

In their policies to help incentivize not only sustainability and negotiations, but also significant changes in human rights and elections.

Conditions, without sacrificing the import of past and potentially useful political leverage points?

• How should sanctions be used as a lever to ensure compliance with the measures agreed upon during the negotiations?

Involve the private sector

• What are the benefits of greater private sector participation in the Venezuelan economy in terms of transparency, humanitarian support, accountability, rebuilding a stable foundation for future political change, and long-term benefits for world energy markets? ?

• Are there sectors that are particularly important to broad shared objectives?

• What should those objectives be?

• What is the role of the financial sector?

A number of recent international reports, including from the UN Fact Finding and the 2021 EU Electoral Observation Mission have presented concrete recommendations to improve the human rights situation in Venezuela and electoral reforms and conditions for free and fair elections. in 2024 and 2025.

• How can they be addressed in the negotiations in Mexico?

• How can the governments of Latin America, Europe, Canada and others help to promote their centrality in the negotiations and in the international public debate?

• How can the possibility of direct missions by credible international NGOs and the EU to monitor these conditions in the run up to 2024

Is it better to approach the elections?

• Is further cooperation between the original International Contact Group, including the US, possible?

• What would that look like?

• What are the objectives of the EU, UK, Canada and other governments of European countries in the policy of sanctions?

• What is the best way to achieve them?

Discussion on effectivness of sanctions


Maibort Petit

Maibort Petit is an investigative journalist born in Venezuela. She studied in Caracas, Maracaibo, Pittsburgh and Paris, France. The author is based in New York City and works for several hispanics media outlets. She became a voice for the latin people in NYC, as well as having fought the censorship imposed in the Venezuelan media by the socialist government, reported on cases of corruption, drug trafficking and money laundering.


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