Venezuela President Nicolás Maduro really didn’t want to come to Costa Rica for the third annual Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC). Maduro seemed to treat the meeting of 33 countries as a party that he was obliged to attend.
First, the Venezuelan president dropped an accusation that a “terrorist group” was lying in wait for him in Costa Rica. He ended up flying in regardless. Costa Rican Foreign Minister Manuel González and intelligence agency director Mariano Figueres said there was no viable threat to the oil-rich country’s leader, and his security was “not in doubt.”
When the summit broke for recess Wednesday, Maduro did not return to the floor of the Marriott Belén, near the Centro de Eventos Predregal, that he had reportedly rented for the summit. Instead, the Venezuelan president hopped on a plane and spent the night in Nicaragua, reported the daily La Nación and the news website CRHoy.com.
We’ve all had a night like that, right? You’re supposed to head back to your hotel after palling around all night and just end up, you know, flying to Nicaragua and crashing there. ¿Así quién no? After Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega was chastised for breaking CELAC protocol by inviting Puerto Rican independence advocate Rubén Berríos to speak during Ortega’s time in the plenary session, maybe he needed a friend. Either that or he was really worried about that terrorist cell.
Maduro then tried to sneak back into Costa Rica before the Thursday session of the CELAC summit started. La Nación reported that Maduro’s security detail tried to hide the fact that he had left the country, blocking reporters from photographing him exiting the plane.There was no record on file showing that Maduro had left the country, but the Immigration Administration confirmed the exit to local media.
Ortega just “couldn’t even” and stayed home Thursday.