Photo: América Digital, retrieved.
- Juan Guaidó said they’re willing to do everything they can to provide as much aid as possible for as many Venezuelans as possible, especially the most vulnerable, but with conditions to guarantee that the supplies and resources they obtain don’t contribute to the regime’s corruption schemes or blackmailing the population. He promised to prove with actions his interest for the wellbeing of Venezuelans and reported that they managed to recover 20 million dollars that international organizations will manage and distribute directly. These institutions will define the priorities and allocation of the aid, to guarantee transparency. The country isn’t ready for this pandemic, he said, adding that “we can find the aid, but the Armed Forces must remove the obstacles.”
- The UN rated Venezuela as one the countries that will require priority attention between April and December 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic. In their Humanitarian Response Global Plan, a report published on Wednesday, they warned that the public health system in Venezuela has limited capacity to care for patients, a limitation marked by the shortage of medicine and supplies, lack of water and electricity, and mass migration of healthcare professionals. They also mentioned the groups at risk in the country: senior citizens with pre-existing health conditions and food insecurity, indigenous people and health workers. They pointed at the restrictions derived from isolation and not having access to gas as obstacles for humanitarian work. The Humanitarian Response Global Plan estimates a 2 billion dollar budget. The regime wanted the IMF to lend 5 billion to Venezuela only.
- UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said on Wednesday that because of the threat that coronavirus poses, governments should release all “political prisoners and other people who were taken to jail just for expressing critical ideas or dissenting.”
- Delcy Rodríguez confirmed on Wednesday 15 new cases (that’s 106 official cases in 13 days): five in Miranda, four in Aragua, two in Caracas, two in Zulia, one in Bolívar and one in Los Roques. She says that the UN approved the regime’s measures and that the country will receive supplies donated by this organization to detect the virus. In her words, 40,000 people have been visited all around the country and they’ve run 1,830 tests to rule out the virus. She insisted on Venezuela having the necessary resources to tackle the pandemic, but then announced that a new plane with humanitarian aid would be arriving on Thursday. She said “Venezuela doesn’t beg” and that they have contacted six governments that have blocked resources to release them. She added that the contagion curve remains flat and that they have managed to “contain the virus” (!).
- Jorge Rodríguez reported about yet another conspiracy plan from Colombia (yes, one more) with U.S. cooperation to murder Nicolás Maduro and Diosdado Cabello. According to Rodríguez, they tried to bring a war arsenal worth 500,000 dollars into the country, that President Iván Duque could have invested in medical supplies to tackle the pandemic. The people guilty for this new attack would be Clíver Alcalá Cordones, Luisa Ortega Díaz and deputies Germán Ferrer and Hernán Alemán. Remember, all of them used to be chavistas with powerful positions during Chávez’s government and his successor. Venezuelan journal Tal Cual pointed out that this plan greatly resembles a plan they denounced in August of 2019.
- Last night, Nicolás said that there are three severe COVID-19 cases, one of them is “pretty serious” and the other two are “stable.” He said that the most serious case is getting “adequate medical care” and devoted some time to go over contagion and death figures in other countries and replied to Henrique Capriles, saying that he’s ready to talk to the opposition.
- Guárico governor José Vásquez confirmed their first COVID-19 case: a minor whose family had recently traveled to La Guaira.
- Miranda governor Héctor Rodríguez met with mayors of Baruta, El Hatillo and Chacao to take measures against COVID-19. They announced that they’d increase isolation measures, sanitation of houses and building and unify health systems.
- The pandemic has killed 21,000 people in the world and there are already 468,000 cases. Local figures show improbable differences compared to rates in neighboring countries.
- The IMF and the World Bank asked bilateral creditors of poorer countries to “freeze debt” so they can release money and fight the coronavirus pandemic.
- The regime is seeking a grace period for loan payments, said a source to Reuters, a similar agreement to the one they reached in 2016, which allowed Venezuela to only pay interests on the loans for over a year.
- AP journalist Joshua Goodman revealed that chavismo spent 4 million dollars lobbying in the U.S. to try to lift sanctions. That money could have been used to pay for equipment and supplies to fight the pandemic. Jorge Arreaza reported that alongside China, Russia, Iran, Syria, Korea, Cuba and Nicaragua, the regime asked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres “that the UN strongly backs the complete lift” of sanctions. José Ignacio Hernández, the caretaker government’s special attorney general, said that “it’s thanks to the executive orders of the U.S. government that Venezuelan assets are safe from creditors we inherited from Chávez and Maduro. It seems logical that some of those creditors and their lobbyists would want sanctions lifted.”
- The Simón Bolívar satellite, launched in 2008, presented a “failure” and is no longer working, said the Science and Technology Ministry in their brief statement. Space News reported on Monday that the satellite has been “stuck for 10 days in an elliptical orbit” after “a series of maneuvers left it in an unusable orbit”. Building and putting the satellite in orbit cost the country $241 million, in addition to the $ 165 million that both stations on earth cost. $406 million down the toilet.
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