Regional powers work to stop Venezuelan Mercosur presidency

Although Uruguay has ended its term at the head of the Mercosur regional trading bloc, Venezuela has not taken over the rotating presidency as scheduled, due to concerns over the current crisis and lack of democracy.  At the latest Mercosur meeting in Uruguay, representatives from Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay met without any officials from Venezuela. At a separate gathering, Argentina’s President Macri met with counterparts from Brazil and Paraguay after the Olympics opening ceremony to further discuss the situation. 

Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez says she will not allow the “triple alliance” of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay to “take by assault” the Mercosur presidency. Meanwhile, Paraguay recalls its’ ambassador from Venezuela, after President Maduro calls the country part of “an extreme right-wing alliance.”