The United States ambassador to Venezuela, James Story, assured that the country maintains support for the negotiations between the opposition and Maduro’s dictatorship, along with the efforts they are making to apply the full extent of the law to Álex Saab.
Amb. Story explained that the United States is a country whose judicial and political systems ‘are separated’, in order to preserve the rule of law and to prevent corruption.
“The criminal charges against Saab are completely separate from our foreign policy towards Venezuela,” he said through his virtual program Aló Embajador.
The diplomat also stressed that if someone wants to change the result of Saab’s extradition from Cape Verde, a country where he has been detained since June 2020 for money laundering “it would be quite difficult to do so and he could not.”
Regarding the sanctions, Mr. Story reiterated that the only way to make them more flexible is through a negotiated and comprehensive agreement and when there are irreversible advances towards democracy in Venezuela.
“Release of imprisoned politicians, free elections, access to the media and an end to repression,” he mentioned.
In his opinion, the participation of the opposition in the regional elections of November 21st does not mean recognition of the ruling party. He argued in the program that the objective of the negotiations is to achieve fair, free and verifiable presidential elections.
The U.S. Ambassador affirmed that in the most recent report from the State Department, it highlights Venezuela as one of the countries that does not comply with its international commitments against drug trafficking.
“It is a routine annual process, every September we certify something that you already know, Venezuela is a country of transit and origin of illegal narcotics and these same networks are supporting the undemocratic regime,” he added.