NDP ISSUE STATEMENT ON THE BOLIVARIAN REPUBLIC OF VENEZUELA F

Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines: As the socio-economic and political situation in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela becomes increasingly precarious our concern for the safety, security and general well-being of the people of that regional sister country occupies our greatest consideration at this critical time. We urge the protagonists in the country, in particular, as well as all external parties, to be guided by that primordial humanitarian principle. The citizens of that country, like all other people, deserve to live in peace and security, in their own homeland, in order to build a healthy, prosperous and felicitous existence, utilizing their human and natural resources, for the benefit of all.

We in the New Democratic Party (NDP), the oldest active political party in St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), in accordance with our constitution, have actively worked to forge lasting relations with the governments and people of Latin America, even before the attainment of political independence in 1979. Indeed, we have moved in the footsteps of our forebears, who, since the mid-19th century, have traversed the region and beyond in search of opportunities for economic advancement.  In government we have consolidated and extended interstate relations, firmly based on mutual respect and non-interference in domestic affairs. At the sub-regional, regional, hemispheric and wider international levels, through our membership in the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States, CARICOM, the Association of Caribbean States, the Organization of American States and the United Nations, our party is a consistent voice for our guiding principles of respect for, and promotion of, human rights, and self-determination of peoples through representative democracy. 

Our party, in parliamentary opposition since 2001, is fully aware of the less salubrious manifestations and frustrations of democracy through abuse of government power over the people. Even now, some three years after the last general election in SVG, in December 2015, the people are awaiting the decision of the courts of law in relation to petitions filed in a situation where the government holds a narrow one (1) seat majority for a second consecutive election. It is a clear case of justice delayed being justice denied.

The security of states is best served through principled multi-lateral co-operation among themselves, regardless of size, individual wealth, or strength. For small and micro-states like SVG it is the only option.

Fully cognizant of the challenges, stresses and strains to which even the most established democracies are subject, we reiterate our unwavering commitment to the solidarity we share with other countries of the region with the people of the Bolivarian republic. We recall, with deep appreciation, the long-standing bi-lateral co-operation and mutual assistance between our countries and pray for a resolution of the current crisis, in the best interests of the Venezuelan people.

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