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USA and other countries in the region will ask to activate TIAR in the face of Venezuela crisis

September 10, 2019

Update (2 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 10): Carlos Trujillo, the US ambassador to the Organization of American States (OAS), said Tuesday that the goal of activating the TIAR defense treaty is not to use military force but to have a legal framework for the crisis in Venezuela.

“The purpose of the TIAR is not to invoke military force, it is to seek a legal framework,” Trujillo told reporters.

Monday the United States reported that together with other countries in the region they will invoke the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR) of defense against the crisis in Venezuela.

The original story is below: 

The United States and other countries in the region will invoke the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR) in response to the crisis in Venezuela, the Trump administration said on Monday, while the delegate of Juan Guaidó before the OAS said he will take the issue to the Permanent Council.

“Eleven countries, including the United States and the interim government of Juan Guaidó are asking to invoke the Treaty of Rio to confront the crisis that [the government of Nicolás] Maduro has caused,” tweeted the Western Hemisphere section of the State Department.

The United States and 50 countries recognize the opposition leader of the Venezuelan Parliament, Juan Guaidó, as the interim president of Venezuela and consider Nicolás Maduro’s second term as illegitimate.

Gustavo Tarre, delegate to the Organization of American States (OAS) of Guaidó, reported Monday in Washington that he will take a vote to the Permanent Council on Wednesday to determine if the TIAR defense pact consultation body can be activated.

“When the sovereignty of a country has been affected in some way or the peace of the continent is in danger, it is possible to apply the TIAR,” said Tarre, who explained that 10 votes are needed, equivalent to the absolute majority.

Tarre declined to identify the countries that support the initiative and said that there are no “established lapses” in the treaty for the meeting of the consultation body, but said it could take advantage of the presence of many foreign ministers in the UN General Assembly that is celebrated this month in New York.

Venezuela abandoned TIAR six years ago. The treaty is a regional mutual military defense agreement that provides a legal framework for a possible foreign intervention.

In July, the Parliament led by Guaidó approved the return of Venezuela to the defense pact, a decision that Maduro’s government does not recognize.

“Our collective objective is to increase diplomatic and economic pressure on Maduro to create a path for free and fair elections in Venezuela,” the State Department said on Twitter.

The TIAR is made up of Argentina, Brazil, Bahamas, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the United States, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, the Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, and Uruguay and Cuba.

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