Diverse group of experts and practitioners from Venezuela, the United States, Latin America, and Europe to galvanize international support for humanitarian efforts and democratic restoration in Venezuela

Washington, DC — May 27, 2021 — The Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center (AALAC) today launched its Venezuela Working Group, a new effort that will advance a long-term vision and international consensus on action-oriented policies to foster democratic stability in Venezuela.

The Venezuela Working Group will focus on priority issues for the country’s future: COVID-19 vaccination efforts; non-traditional mechanisms for alleviating the humanitarian crisis; free and fair regional elections; and the role of foreign actors in the country.

Today’s launch comes at a critical moment as Venezuela negotiates a national COVID-19 vaccination plan and prepares for gubernatorial and municipal elections. The elections will be led by a new National Electoral Council (CNE), with two of five rectors being opposition-aligned —a first since the fraudulent 2018 presidential elections in which Maduro unconstitutionally claimed his reelection. At the same time, the United States, Europe, Latin America, and allies of Venezuela’s democratic forces seek to find effective solutions to alleviate the suffering of the Venezuelan people and promote the restoration of democratic stability.

“The deepening instability and human suffering in Venezuela requires urgent international action,” said Jason Marczak, Director of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center. “Coordinated pressure from the United States and its allies to find pathways to peace is essential for avoiding a new phase in the Venezuela crisis that would further destabilize regional neighbors and beyond.”

The effort will be a key component of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center’s high-impact Venezuela programming that promotes the restoration of democratic institutions in Venezuela through a sustained, human-centered international campaign that advances an inclusive, Venezuelan-led democratic resolution to the political crisis.

Coordinated pressure from the United States and its allies to find pathways to peace is essential for avoiding a new phase in the Venezuela crisis that would further destabilize regional neighbors and beyond.

Jason Marczak, Director, Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, Atlantic Council

This new effort will bring together an influential group of experts from the United States, Venezuela, Latin America and Europe, including former government officials, heads of in-country humanitarian organizations, oil industry practitioners, economists, civil society leaders, and academics. Each will be involved in promoting actionable recommendations to officials in the United States and in Europe. “We convened this diverse and influential group to propose actionable solutions to the multidimensional challenges of the Venezuela crisis, but also to raise awareness about the consequences of inaction from the United States and the international community,” said Diego Area, Associate Director and Venezuela lead at AALAC.

We convened this diverse and influential group to propose actionable solutions to the multidimensional challenges of the Venezuela crisis, but also to raise awareness about the consequences of inaction from the United States and the international community.

Diego Area, Associate Director, Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, Atlantic Council

The Venezuela Working Group will be launched this week on AALAC’s social media channels through a series of short clips featuring members of the group and through a public event in June 2021 promoting a viable national vaccination plan in Venezuela.

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The Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center broadens understanding of regional transformations through high-impact work that shapes the conversation among policymakers, the business community, and civil society. The Center focuses on Latin America’s strategic role in a global context with a priority on pressing political, economic, and social issues that will define the trajectory of the region now and in the years ahead. Select lines of programming include: Venezuela’s crisis; Mexico-US and global ties; China in Latin America; Colombia’s future; a changing Brazil; Central America’s trajectory; Caribbean development; commercial patterns shifts; energy resources; and disinformation.