The UN Security Council Did Not Adopt a Resolution on Venezuela
It was the third Council meeting seeking solutions to Venezuela's "protracted crisis" since tensions started escalating in January, when Juan Guaidó, head of the country's National Assembly, challenged the legitimacy of the sitting President, Nicolás Maduro, who has been in power since 2013 and who was sworn in again for a second term, on 10 January.
The 15 members of the Council have been divided between those who are firmly supporting Mr. Maduro arguing that he is the legitimate elected president and those who support Mr. Guaidó's claim, backed by calls for a fresh round of voting.
The US draft resolution called for the holding of new elections and a recognition of self-proclaimed interim President Guaidó. Nine voted in favour (Germany, Poland, Peru, US, United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Dominican Republic, Kuwait), three against (Russia, China, South Africa) and there were three abstentions (Equatorial Guinea, Indonesia, Côte d'Ivoire).
"The Situation in Venezuela demands our action now," the United States Special Representative for Venezuela, Elliot Abrams, told the Council. "The time for a peaceful transition to democracy is now…We look forward to genuine free and fair elections and to a Government that reflects the will and aspirations of the Venezuelan people".
Russia's draft called for a dialogue between the Government and the opposition, in line with the Montevideo mechanism - a forum for talks, launched by Mexico and Uruguay earlier this February. The text produced four votes in favour (Russia, China, South Africa, Equatorial Guinea), seven against (Germany, Poland, Peru, US, United Kingdom, France, Belgium) and four abstentions (Côte d'Ivoire, Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Kuwait).
"We drafted an alternative draft...