Venezuela’s Guaidó seeks to renew diplomatic ties with Israel 

Source: Venezuela’s Guaidó seeks to renew diplomatic ties with Israel – Israel Hayom

In interview with Israel Hayom, Juan Guaidó, recognized by some 50 countries, including Israel, as Venezuela’s interim leader, says, “I am very happy to announce that the process of stabilizing relations with Israel is in full swing.”

Eldad Beck // published on 12/02/2019
   
Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó, whom many nations have recognized as the country’s rightful interim ruler 


Once bastions of support for President Nicolás Maduro, Venezuela’s shanty towns have in recent weeks grown increasingly fond of opposition leader Juan Guaidó. In fact, he is now so popular in Venezuela’s slums that he asks me to meet him in one such barrio north of the country’s capital of Caracas. When Guaidó learns that I am Israeli, his face lights up.

Some 50 foreign countries, including Israel, have recognized Guaidó as Venezuela’s interim president.

I asked Guaidó whether he would act to re-establish diplomatic ties between Venezuela and Israel, which were cut off by the country’s former leader Hugo Chávez following 2008’s Operation Cast Lead.

“I am very happy to announce that the process of stabilizing relations with Israel is in full swing,” Guaidó said, noting, “It is very important for us.” “We will renew ties, later we will announce the appointment of an ambassador to Israel, and we really hope an ambassador from Israel will come to us.”

Israel Hayom correspondent Eldad Beck, left, with Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó

In the past, the friendly relations between Venezuela and Israel were such that Caracas was one of the few capitals to establish its embassy in Israel in Jerusalem.

When asked whether Venezuela’s new embassy would be situated in Jerusalem, Guaidó replies that “that is one of the subjects we are talking about. I will declare the resumption of ties and the site of the embassy at the proper time,” he said.

Ever since the socialists have taken power in the country, many of Venezuela’s Jews have fled the country as a result of increasing anti-Semitism, some of them have immigrated to Israel. Venezuelan Jews in Israel have been very active in efforts to enlist support for Guaidó, so I asked him whether he had a message for the Venezuelan Jews now residing in Israel.

“There are many Venezuelans in Israel and many Jews in Venezuela,” he said. “This [Jewish] community is very active and prosperous, one which has contributed greatly to our society. I assume they are happy we are renewing ties with Israel.”

And as for the local Jewish community’s fears/concerns about standing publicly by his side, Guaidó said, “I have no doubt that the Jews are afraid. Many in the military forces are also scared to express their opinions. The regime has no respect for the most basic right: the right to live. Many Western countries have already committed to sending humanitarian aid to Venezuela. I am confident that Israel will also help us.”

 

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