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Weekly Report - 16 May 2019 (WR-19-19)

VENEZUELA: Reading the runes in political impasse

Venezuela’s political instability and unpredictability was encapsulated in a rapid series of developments in the space of five days this week. On 11 May the opposition figurehead and widely recognised interim president Juan Guaidó addressed a dishearteningly small crowd of supporters in Caracas. Guaidó reacted by instructing his diplomatic representative in the US to meet the head of US Southern Command (Southcom) in a sign that he could seek foreign military intervention. On 14 May the government led by Nicolás Maduro imposed a heavy security presence around the opposition-controlled national assembly preventing deputies from entering. By the next day it emerged that exploratory talks involving government and opposition representatives are taking place in Norway to address the political crisis.

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