Venezuela Trashes Amply Violated Deal with Biden Administration for ‘Free and Fair’ Elections

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro waves a national flag during a rally in support
GABRIELA ORAA/AFP via Getty Images

Venezuela’s socialist regime signed an agreement Wednesday with several collaborationist groups to work toward setting a date for a “free and fair” presidential election in 2024.

The agreement, according to the regime of dictator Nicolás Maduro, “substitutes for the “Barbados agreement,” signed by the socialist regime in October with Venezuela’s Unitary Platform “opposition” coalition — and negotiated under the observation of the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Wednesday’s new sham election agreement — officially called the “National Agreement on General Principles, Timetable and Extension of Electoral Guarantees for the 2024 Presidential Election,” — saw representatives of the ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), PSUV’s allied and ancillary parties, smaller “opposition” parties, and collaborationist members of trade, industries, and other civil society organizations pledge to participate in a “free and fair” presidential election in 2024. The deal suggested roughly 27 possible dates for the yet-to-be-scheduled electoral event between April 13 and December 8.

The agreement will be presented to the regime-controlled National Electoral Council (CNE) on Friday.

“From my point of view, this agreement is the development of the Barbados agreement and substitutes for it. Because he who can do more, can do less,” Jorge Rodríguez, head of the Venezuelan National Assembly, said. “In other words, the Barbados agreement is a subset of this set of this agreement, which is much broader.”

Socialist dictator Nicolás Maduro celebrated the new agreement by downplaying the October 2023 Barbados deal and previous agreements signed with the “opposition” as “sub-agreements” contingent upon the latest alleged deal.

“The Barbados and Mexico agreements are sub-agreements integrated to the Caracas agreement that will guarantee free elections in Venezuela,” Maduro said during an official event. “With great tact and political capacity, we will comply with this agreement as we have complied with all the agreements from the Dominican Republic, Norway, Mexico, and Barbados.”

“This agreement, which I qualify as the broad agreement of Caracas, gathers the best of the dialogues of Mexico and Barbados and gathers the best of all sectors and of the political parties legalized in the CNE,” he added.

The Biden administration-endorsed Barbados Agreement — which the Maduro regime never took action to enact in any way — mapped out a series of vague steps for the holding of a “free and fair” presidential election sometime during the second half of 2024.

In exchange for its promises, President Joe Biden gifted the Maduro regime an extensive oil and gas sanctions relief package that, among other provisions, once again allows Venezuela to freely sell its oil in U.S. and international markets.

Following Biden’s restoration of what was once its main source of revenue, the Maduro regime almost immediately began to violate the terms of the agreement, opting to instead double down on repressing dissidents. Maduro announced a new violent crackdown operation known as “Bolivarian Fury” and upheld a ban on opposition frontrunner candidate María Corina Machado that prevents her from running in the hypothetical 2024 election. 

Machado – who, according to polls released last year, would easily defeat Maduro in an actual legitimate election – has seen several of her campaign administrators kidnapped by the Maduro regime. Her campaign rallies have also been violently assaulted by socialist thugs.

According to Rodríguez, the new sham election agreement states that “whatever the electoral result is, it must be abided by all and everyone,” and that “there should be no external pressure for the development of the electoral event and that there should be no harmful action for the Venezuelan economy,” alluding to the wide array of human rights sanctions remaining on the regime.

Rodríguez asserted that international observers would be allowed only if they “comply with the requirements” and do not come from countries that have imposed sanctions on members of the rogue socialist regime, effectively shutting down the possibility of an observation mission from the European Union.

“They [the EU] cannot be observers and approve from the instance to which you belong, aggressive resolutions against Venezuela, say that you sanction the president of the CNE and the vice-president of the Republic, they cannot be observers to meddle in the internal affairs of the country, the word is respect,” Rodríguez said.

The head of the socialist-led National Assembly said that the agreement also requires Venezuela’s top electoral authority to “elaborate a new mechanism” to regulate social media to allow all candidates to “have access to spaces in the media.” The Maduro regime has established an extensive track record of censoring the media and internet in Venezuela over the past two decades.

When asked about the possibility of allowing Venezuelans abroad to vote in the election, Rodríguez claimed that the regime has “never denied the right to vote to a Venezuelan that’s registered at a Consulate.”

Rodríguez specifically addressed the cases of the United States and Argentina.

“How will people in the United States vote? They can’t,” Rodríguez said. “How, if we are not allowed to have consular representation in the United States? We would like nothing better than to open voting in the United States of America.”

In the case of Argentina, Rodríguez asserted that it would not be possible because, according to him, Argentine President Javier Milei would “steal” the ballots.

“How will a Venezuelan vote in Argentina? If we send the electoral material, the madman [Milei], that psychopath who is president of Argentina, will steal it.”

Christian K. Caruzo is a Venezuelan writer and documents life under socialism. You can follow him on Twitter here.


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