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Biden and Venezuela’s Guaido Plan to Speak on Summit’s Sidelines

·1 min read

(Bloomberg) -- President Joe Biden and Juan Guaido plan to speak remotely during the Summit of the Americas this week, after the US declined to invite the Venezuela opposition leader to participate in the meeting in person.

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Biden is likely to hold a video call with Guaido Tuesday or Wednesday, Brian Nichols, assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere Affairs, said Tuesday to Venezuelan online television channel VPI. They’ll address “important issues” such as the return to the negotiation process in Mexico, Nichols said.

While the US continues to recognize Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president, the decision to not extend him an invitation was taken after White House came under pressure from some attendees over Guaido’s inclusion, according to a source familiar with the plans who asked not to be identified.

“It has been a bit complicated to manage the relationships between those of us who fully recognize the interim government and those of us who don’t,” Nichols said.

The Biden administration has been criticized by leaders from Latin America and the Caribbean for excluding Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and his peers in Nicaragua and Cuba. Mexico’s Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador boycotted the Los Angeles meeting in protest over the decision, sending his foreign minister in his place.

Other members of Venezuela’s opposition, including Guaido’s representative to the US, Carlos Vecchio, will travel to the site, the people said, but not formally participate in the summit. According to Nichols, they’ll join forums as “individuals.”

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