The US to exclude Maduro from Summit for the Americas
The US prepares the Summit of the Americas, excludes Caracas and Havana governments, and welcomes self-proclaimed President Guaido and "civil society" groups.
On Thursday, the US announced that they will most definitely not invite the Venezuelan government of President Nicolas Maduro to the Summit of the Americas taking place on June 6-7 in Los Angeles.
When asked about the topic, the US national coordinator of the summit Kevin O’Reilly responded in a congressional hearing “Absolutely not. We do not recognize them as a sovereign government."
Read more: Maduro: US-backed Juan Guaidó coup attempt failed
That answer was inevitably followed by a question to clarify whether or not the US had discussed with or invited representatives of self-proclaimed President Juan Guaido. To which O’Reilly returned that the US holds regular talks with Guido representatives and supporters about how the two can further engage and participate in summits. However, he noted that it is the White House’s responsibility to handle the invites.
It is worth mentioning that Guaidó declared himself interim president in January 2019. Earlier, Maduro said, in an interview for Al Mayadeen, that the Venezuelan people resisted fierce attacks launched by US imperialism and its allies.
According to O'Reilly, the White House should decide whether or not to invite the Cuban government. Moreover, the US had previously invited representatives of Cuba's civil society. The goal, said the official, is to have broad participation from the civil society across the Americas to counter “authoritarians” or “dictators” that, the US claims, seek to limit public debate.
The United States and Cuba have had tense relations since the 1959 revolution that saw former President Fidel Castro overthrow the US-backed Fulgencio Batista regime, under which the population suffered from horrendous conditions.
The US has had Cuba sanctioned since the revolution took place, though Washington had ratcheted up sanctions against the country several times.