At the invitation of the President of Colombia Ivan Duque, Vice President Mike Pence will travel to Bogota, Colombia on behalf of President Donald Trump on Monday, February 25th to voice the United States’ unwavering support for interim President Juan Guaido and highlight the Venezuelan people’s fight for democracy over dictatorship.
In Colombia, the Vice President will deliver remarks at a meeting of the Lima Group focused on addressing the tragic humanitarian and security crises unfolding in Venezuela and ongoing U.S. efforts to deliver aid to the country. While there, he will meet with Colombian President Ivan Duque, a proven leader on this issue, and other officials from the Western Hemisphere to define concrete steps that support the Venezuelan people and a transition to democracy. The Vice President will state plainly that the time has come for Nicolas Maduro to step aside. He will also meet with Venezuelan families who have fled Maduro’s regime.
“The struggle in Venezuela is between dictatorship and democracy, and freedom has the momentum. Juan Guaido is the only legitimate leader of Venezuela, and it’s time for Nicolas Maduro to go. The United States is proud to join the Lima Group and other global partners to marshal our resources, provide much needed humanitarian relief, and stand together with the people of Venezuela until democracy and freedom are fully restored.” –Alyssa Farah, Press Secretary for Vice President Pence.
This trip will be Vice President Pence’s fifth trip to Latin America as Vice President. In his previous trips, Vice President Pence has met with Venezuelans who have fled their country to escape the Maduro regime to hear their personal stories firsthand.
Additional details about the Vice President’s trip are forthcoming.
On January 23rd the United States was the first country to recognize Juan Guaido as the Interim President of Venezuela, and the National Assembly as the only legitimate branch of government duly elected by the Venezuelan people.
On January 24th , Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pledged $20 million in humanitarian aid for Venezuela- the aid was the first step in helping Interim President Guaido in providing benefits to the Venezuelan people
On January 28th, President Trump designated the Venezuelan state oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela, SA (PDVSA) under Executive Order 13850, essentially blocking all exports, imports and financial dealings with the Venezuelan oil sector, except those explicitly permitted by the Department of Treasury licenses. (VP Tweet)
On January 29, Vice President Pence met with Carlos Vecchio, Ambassador of Venezuela to the United States, Julio Borges, Ambassador of Venezuela to the Lima Group, and other Venezuelan officials to express the strong support of the United States for the Venezuelan National Assembly and the government of President Juan Guaido (Readout).
On February 1st, the Vice President traveled to Miami FL, where he participated in a roundtable discussion with Venezuelan exiles and community leaders including families, political prisoners and former elected officials who were forced to flee Venezuela due to political persecution. The Vice President and the Second Lady listened to their stories and their continuing efforts working to restore freedom and democracy in Venezuela (Remarks).
On February 13, the President of Colombia, Ivan Duque met with President Trump at the White House (Statements).
Last week, the Interim President Juan Guaido called upon volunteers to cross the border from Cucuta to Venezuela on February 23rd with humanitarian aid sent by the United State to help the people of Venezuela. This comes a month after the Venezuelan people marched in fight for freedom across the country and recognized Juan Guaido as their Interim President.