Published On: Wed, May 23rd, 2018

The Kingdom does not recognize Venezuela’s election results

BlokTHE HAGUE, WILLEMSTAD - the Netherlands and with it the other countries of the Kingdom do not acknowledge the result of the presidential elections in Venezuela last Sunday. Minister Stef Blok has stated today in a consultation with the Dutch parliamentary committee for Foreign Affairs. "There was no question of free and independent elections,” said the minister.

Blok assessed the situation in the neighboring country as 'disconcerting, harrowing and heartbreaking' and called Venezuela an interesting case for economists to see how an economy is helped by vandalism in the destruction. Regarding the expected stream of refugees, the minister repeated what Undersecretary of Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops said earlier this week: The Netherlands is willing to assist Curaçao and Aruba with expertise, but the countries themselves remain responsible for the admission and expulsion of foreigners.

Blok expects countries to treat asylum applications carefully, but assumes that the vast majority of Venezuelans do not qualify for asylum because they have economic motives and that countries therefore have the right to return them. The minister did not dare to mention numbers of Venezuelans who are already illegally staying on the islands. Asked to respond to the reproaches of Prime Minister Evelyn Wever-Croes of Aruba to the address of the Netherlands, he pointed out that she has sent a rectification. Furthermore, he strongly refuted that allowing a controversial consul on Aruba would have any connection with the abolition of the border blockade.

Venezuela, incidentally, was not on the agenda of the consultations that focused mainly on the situation in the Middle East. The unrest in the neighboring country and the impact on the ABC islands will be discussed next week in a separate debate.

Source: Rene Zwart

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