Respect the Self-Determination of the People of Venezuela!
The Fire This Time Movement for Social Justice Venezuela Solidarity Campaign condemns the January 4, 2019 statement by the so-called “Lima Group” attempting to delegitimize the upcoming inauguration of Nicolas Maduro to his second term as President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. The Lima Group would be much better served trying to learn from Venezuela’s exemplary electoral system rather than ignorantly defaming it.
The Lima Group formed in August 2017 after the U.S. government failed to force the Organization of American States to undemocratically expel Venezuela. This opportunistic alliance is made up of the governments of Canada, Mexico and 12 right-wing pro-imperialist Latin American countries.
Although it has been part of the Lima Group, we welcome that Mexico’s new government refused to sign on to the new undignified statement. No wonder. What authority do these foreign governments imagine they have to say anything about the inauguration of the democratically elected President of Venezuela — let alone demand, “Mr. Maduro to not assume the office of president on January 10, 2019”?
This is yet another example of the Lima Group campaigning for the overthrow of the government of President Maduro and attempting to reverse the gains made by poor, working and oppressed people in Venezuela throughout the last 20 years of the Bolivarian revolutionary process.
Three members of the Fire This Time Movement for Social Justice Venezuela Solidarity Campaign were part of an international delegation in Venezuela to witness the May 2018 Presidential elections. We saw with our own eyes the tremendous organization and transparency of the elections. President Maduro was elected with over 67% of the votes, 4 million more votes then the other Presidential candidate. President Maduro, the United Socialist Party (PSUV) and supporters of the Bolivarian revolutionary process won another clear six-year mandate to confront the challenges they face.
January 10, 2019 is an important day for the people of Venezuela. They have faced relentless violence, economic war and destabilization attempts by Venezuela’s counter-revolutionary pro-imperialist capitalist class, as well as threats, sanctions and other forms covert and overt intervention by the United States, Canada the EU and their allies. The people of Venezuela re-elected President Maduro knowing full well that this imperialist aggression against them will continue. This is an incredible example of the bravery of the people of Venezuela and their commitment to the revolutionary process.
We denounce especially the actions and statements made by the government of Canada as part of the Lima Group — blustering around pretending it has authority over an independent country an entire continent away. For our part, we as poor, working and oppressed people will continue to unite to organize in defense of the sovereignty and self-determination of the people of Venezuela.
U.S./Canada and the Lima Group Respect the Self-Determination of the People of Venezuela!
January 6, 2019