Russian and United States diplomats to carry Venezuela talks in Italy this week

Sergio Conner
March 22, 2019

Russia's Interfax news agency cited Ryabkov on Sunday as saying that the main day of talks with Abrams would be on Tuesday and that the two sides would discuss how they might encourage negotiations between the Venezuelan government and opposition.

"The conversation turned out to be quite hard, but frank..."

Recent power outages across Venezuela show that "something awful is going on down there" and "we need to put an end" to the current dire situation, Trump said at a joint news conference with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro at the White House.

He, at the same time, added that Russian Federation and the United States still had deep divisions regarding the situation in Venezuela.

Venezuelan opposition leader and parliament speaker Juan Guaido declared himself interim president in January, and was recognized by the United States, most European Union countries, and the majority of Latin American states.

U.S. President Donald Trump said Tuesday that the United States could impose harsher sanctions on Venezuela in its campaign to oust President Nicolas Maduro.

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"No, we did not come to a meeting of minds, but I think the talks were positive in the sense that both sides emerged with a better understanding of the other's views", USA special representative Elliot Abrams told reporters.

The meetings in the Italian capital took place as the United States imposed fresh sanctions on Venezuela, this time targeting the state-run gold mining company Minerven and its president.

But at the White House, President Donald Trump on Tuesday reiterated that "all options are open" on the future of Venezuela. "What's happening there is a disgrace", he said.

"This a catastrophe for Venezuela", Abrams said.

Russian Federation has called the global community to join efforts aimed at rejecting a military option against Venezuela, for which, he warned, Washington seeks the most improbable pretexts.

"We have warned the USA against that reckless approach", Ryabkov said in remarks that were carried by the state Tass and RIA Novosti news agencies. "We assume that Washington treats our priorities seriously, our approach and warnings".

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