News|Nicolas Maduro
Venezuela’s Maduro taps new foreign minister in cabinet shake-up
Maduro is pressing for the lifting of sanctions imposed by the United States and Europe.
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro addresses the media from the Miraflores Palace, in Caracas, Venezuela, on talks aimed at ending the nation's political standoff [Leonardo Fernandez Viloria/Reuters]
19 Aug 2021
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has named a new foreign minister in a cabinet shake-up that comes amid negotiations with the opposition meant to ease the country’s political deadlock.
Felix Plasencia, Venezuela’s envoy to China, will now serve as Venezuela’s top diplomat, while outgoing Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza will serve as industry and production minister, President Maduro wrote on Twitter.
Plasencia “has the immense responsibility of continuing the excellent diplomatic work carried out by Jorge Arreaza”, Maduro wrote.
“We must ensure the triumph of our Peace Diplomacy around the world.”
Maduro is pressing for the lifting of sanctions imposed by the United States and Europe against Venezuelan officials and institutions for the state’s suppression of democracy in the oil-producing South American country.
US President Joe Biden’s administration has maintained measures against Venezuela’s economy and continued support for opposition leader Juan Guaido.
Maduro’s latest cabinet shuffle also brings changes to the education, interior and mining ministries.
The opposition and the government last week opened talks in Mexico City in which the opposition is seeking improved electoral conditions and the release of imprisoned activists while Maduro allies are pushing for an end to US sanctions.
Maduro had on August 16 expressed optimism about talks with the opposition, saying at a news conference in Caracas the discussions had got off to a “good start”.
Maduro brandished an agreement signed by government and opposition delegates at the talks, which are being mediated by Norway and hosted by Mexico.
“We took the first step: dialogue with those who wanted to kill and overthrow us. In what part of the world does this happen? We have sat down to see the faces of those who wanted to kill us,” Maduro said.
He said the negotiations were “already successful”. The discussions are set to resume in three weeks.
Us Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who discussed the outlook for Venezuela with Guaido in March, welcomed the talks in a tweet on August 14.
The opposition wants Maduro to release dozens of people it considers political prisoners and provide guarantees its candidates can run in regional elections due in November.
Guaido, who declared himself Venezuela’s president in 2019 through his position as parliament speaker, wants guarantees over electoral conditions and a clear programme for presidential elections.
Venezuela gov­ern­ment, op­po­si­tion launch talks in Mex­i­co
Rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the two sides sign an agree­ment in Mex­i­co City to start talks me­di­at­ed by Nor­way.
14 Aug 2021
From: Inside Story
Will stand­off in Venezuela fi­nal­ly come to an end?
Venezuela’s gov­ern­ment and its op­po­si­tion are ex­pect­ed to hold talks in Mex­i­co in Au­gust to re­solve their dif­fer­ences.
6 Aug 2021
Venezuela’s Maduro ex­press­es de­sire for for­eign aid, Biden deal
Venezuela’s pres­i­dent hopes a US deal will open the flood­gates to for­eign in­vest­ment and help cre­ate jobs.
18 Jun 2021
Venezuela needs $58bn to re­store pre-Chavez crude out­put lev­els
State oil firm PDVSA would need $58bn in in­vest­ment to get back to the lev­els it was pro­duc­ing in 1998, Reuters re­ports.
10 May 2021
Indonesia names new capital Nusantara as MPs back relocation
How the world reacted to the Houthi attack on UAE
UN seeks Thailand’s help to halt Myanmar crisis deterioration
Rescue workers search for survivors after deadly Afghan quake
UK gives Ukraine anti-tank weapons as Canada sends special forces
Scientists warn Tonga eruption may damage environment for years
UAE pledges to retaliate after three killed in Houthi attacks
Saudi-led coalition launches air raids in Sanaa, over 12 dead
Follow Al Jazeera English:
© 2022 Al Jazeera Media Network
You rely on Al Jazeera for truth and transparency
We understand that your online privacy is very important and consenting to our collection of some personal information takes great trust. We ask for this consent because it allows Al Jazeera to provide an experience that truly gives a voice to the voiceless.
You have the option to decline the cookies we automatically place on your browser but allowing Al Jazeera and our trusted partners to use cookies or similar technologies helps us improve our content and offerings to you. You can change your privacy preferences at any time by selecting ‘Cookie preferences’ at the bottom of your screen. To learn more, please view our Cookie Policy.
Cookie preferences