French President Emmanuel Macron told Venezuela's dictator Nicolás Maduro that the European Union (EU) could gradually lift sanctions imposed on the country in crisis. This, on the condition that the agreements signed in Barbados are fulfilled, which seek to ensure the holding of free and fair presidential elections.
In a telephone conversation with Maduro, Macron encouraged the Venezuelan regime to comply with the agreements made on October 17 and assured it that in exchange, France would contribute to the social fund for the civilian population, managed by the United Nations and support the lifting of EU sanctions.
Although the French presidency has not yet provided details on how the agreement would be carried out, it announced that it will remain in continuous contact with both Maduro and representatives of the opposition.
Macron's proposal arises after the Biden administration reached an agreement with the Venezuelan regime on the temporary lifting of sanctions on the oil, gas and gold sectors, with the condition of guaranteeing fair elections.
Direct de l'Elysée : Entretien téléphonique avec Nicolas Maduro, Président de la République bolivarienne du Venezuela. https://t.co/tQeUWKOlX6
— Direct Politique (@DirectPolitique) November 30, 2023
However, several experts have pointed out that the agreement signed on October 17 was already violated by Maduro when he announced the suspension of “all effects” of the opposition primaries and that sanctions should be reimposed.
The opposition has asked the regime to lift the disqualifications against several politicians who are critical of the dictator, but there has been no progress on this point either.
“There should be no sanctions relief. No one should be doing business with Maduro until free and fair elections are held. He (Nicolás Maduro) must accept María Corina as his opponent," said American senator Rick Scott, after the announcement of the pact with Maduro.
Other critics have agreed that the Biden administration should not have reached an agreement with Maduro based on empty promises.
“Unpopular dictator Nicolás Maduro isn't about to hold a clean election and politely step aside if he loses. The only thing he understands is sanctions, which is why he's willing to make promises to get them lifted,” reads an editorial in The Wall Street Journal.