Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will travel to Chile, Paraguay, Peru and Colombia from April 11 to 15 to discuss security and human rights, and “add support for democracy in Venezuela,” his office announced Monday.
The State Department spokesman, Morgan Ortagus, said in a statement of the official trip, which will begin with a visit to Chile next Friday, which was also confirmed today by the Chilean Foreign Minister, Roberto Ampuero.
Precisely Pompeo will begin its route through the Latin American countries just three days before the meeting of foreign ministers of the Lima Group, which will be held in Santiago de Chile on April 15 to address the Venezuelan crisis.
Pompeo will meet on April 12 with Chilean President Sebastián Piñera and Minister Ampuero to “underline Chile’s regional leadership, economic ties between both countries and their alliances in science, technology and security, including cyber issues” , indicated the State Department in its official note.
A day later, Pompeo will meet with the president of Paraguay, Mario Abdo Benitez, and the foreign minister of that country, Luis Castiglioni, to strengthen their alliance when it comes to “combating transnational crime and corruption.”
In addition, in his conversation, the US representative intends to discuss matters related to Venezuela.
On Venezuela, Pompeo will also speak on that same day in Lima with the president of Peru, Martín Vizcarra, and the Peruvian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Néstor Popolizio.
In particular, both leaders will talk about Peru’s support for Venezuelan refugees, the role of the country’s leadership in the Lima Group and other bilateral issues.
Finally, Pompeo will make a brief stop on Sunday, April 14, in the town of Cúcuta (Colombia), to “visit the entities that support the Venezuelan refugees and assess the challenges on the border,” said the State Department spokesman.
The United States was the first country to recognize the head of the National Assembly (AN, Parliament) of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, as the legitimate Venezuelan president after he was proclaimed as the interim ruler on January 23, when he considered it illegal to take office as president. of Nicolás Maduro after his election in elections considered fraudulent by the opposition.