“Unlikely” Venezuela will be expelled from Mercosur, despite Macri’s promise
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“Unlikely” Venezuela will be expelled from Mercosur, despite Macri’s promise

Experts say a promise by Argentina’s president-elect to expel Venezuela from the Mercosur trade bloc seems unlikely.

Macri is pushing to remove Venezuela from the bloc, citing allegations of “abuses” and “persecution” of the country’s opposition.

Venezuela became a full member of the South American trade bloc in 2012.

Argentina’s new leader, Mauricio Macri, says he’ll push to remove it because of the Venezuelan government’s jailing of opposition leaders. Expulsion would be a huge shift for a region where several countries have left-leaning democratic governments with close ties to Venezuela.

Paraguay’s foreign minister, Eladio Loizaga, responded to Macri, saying that he would “take note” of the Argentine leader’s proposal.
“I am convinced that elections will take place in Venezuela within a legal framework, making the most of the general participation of all Venezuelan citizens and respect for the results,” he stated.

But Mercosur members and academics have said that it is unlikely unless President Nicolas Maduro’s government fails to respect the results of Venezuela’s crucial December 6 congressional elections.

Mercosur has a “democratic clause” saying a country can be sanctioned when it has “broken the democratic order.” It must be voted on by all member countries except the nation being denounced.

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