Last Updated: 2019-01-29
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MEXICO CITY, Jan 29 (NNN-EFE) -- President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said that Mexico will maintain its principle of nonintervention and the right of national self-determination in its approach to the crisis in Venezuela.

"Our position is the same. It is what our constitution establishes. We are not going to move from there," he said during his daily press conference.

Mexico has to respect "the principles of non-intervention, self-determination of people and peaceful settlement of disputes," the president said.

He also mentioned that Mexican diplomats have recommended acting according to these principles and being "very careful."

In this way, Lopez Obrador said, it will also be possible to "strengthen sovereignty" and to ensure that "there will not be any foreign government wanting to interfere in Mexico's internal affairs."

Venezuela's long-running political crisis moved to a more acute phase last Wednesday when the speaker of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, Juan Guaido, proclaimed himself interim head of state.

The opposition, supported by the United States, Washington's allies in Latin America and many European nations, said that last May's presidential election was illegitimate and they refuse to recognize leftist incumbent Nicolas Maduro as president.

Last Thursday, Maduro accepted an offer from Mexico and Uruguay to mediate between the parties. Guaido says that the incumbent must step down as a precondition for talks.

Ever since he took office as Mexico's president on Dec. 1, Lopez Obrador has said that he will adhere to the principle of non-intervention in foreign affairs.

Based on this principle, Mexico did not sign the Lima Group declaration in early January, a declaration in which the member countries agreed not to recognize the legitimacy of a new Nicolas Maduro government and urged him not to take office on Jan. 10.

The governments of Spain, France, Germany, Portugal and the United Kingdom on Saturday issued an ultimatum giving Maduro eight days to call new elections, saying that if he fails to do so, they will recognize Guaido as president of the country.

Clashes over the past week between opposition protesters and Venezuelan security forces have led to at least 35 deaths and 850 arrests, according to figures from human rights organizations. -- NNN-EFE