At the Summit of the Americas, the member countries of the “Lima Group” signed a document in which they demanded the Venezuelan government hold “free and transparent elections” and ratified that the elections to planned by Nicolás Maduro’s regime, lacking these principles, have no legitimacy; furthermore they ratified their support for the National Assembly as the only legitimate legislative body in the South American nation.
The statement reads:
The heads of state and governments of Argentina, the Bahamas, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and Saint Lucia, and the Vice President of the United States, met on the occasion of the VIII Summit of the Americas; in the face of the breakdown of Constitutional order in Venezuela, and concerned about the worsening political, economic, social and humanitarian crisis in that country:
- They make an urgent call to the Venezuelan government to hold presidential elections with the necessary guarantees for a free, fair, transparent, and democratic process, without political prisoners, including the participation of all Venezuelan political actors, and ratify that elections that do not meet these conditions will lack legitimacy and credibility.
- Express their determination to continue promoting, especially within the OAS, actions, and initiatives that contribute to the restoration of democratic institutions, respect for human rights, and the full force of the rule of law.
- Reiterate their support for the National Assembly of Venezuela and reiterate that the legal acts that according to its Constitution require the authorization of that assembly will only be recognized when it has approved and in this context, will consider new measures that contribute to full respect for its constitutional powers in economic and financial matters.
- Urge the specialized agencies, funds, and programs of the United Nations System and the OAS to immediately implement a program of humanitarian assistance to alleviate the situation involving shortages suffered by the people of Venezuela. In this regard, they reiterate their call to the Venezuelan government to allow the entry and distribution of humanitarian aid that mitigates the serious effects of shortages, especially with regard to food and medicine.
- Express their deep concern at the growing exodus of Venezuelan citizens who have been forced to leave their country as a result of the crisis and call on the relevant international organizations to immediately develop a support and capacity-building program for the countries of the region to meet the different needs, including security needs, that stem from this exodus.
- Urge members of the international community to support the efforts and decisions of the countries of the region in order to contribute to the restoration of democracy in Venezuela. They make a call to the countries already involved in the process, to expand and strengthen measures.
- They underscore the importance of the international community in supporting the economic recovery of Venezuela, once the democratic and Constitutional order has been restored.