Kathmandu, July 15
A visiting delegation from Venezuela including Nicolas Ernesto Maduro Guerra, son of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, today met Co-chairperson of ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Pushpa Kamal Dahal and lawmakers.
Guerra is the head of Corps of Special Inspectors of the Presidency and coordinator of the National Film School of Venezuela. He is also a member of the Constituent National Assembly of Venezuela. He is among Maduro’s family members facing US sanctions.
The delegation, which arrived in Kathmandu on Saturday, met NCP leaders Jhalanath Khanal, Bam Dev Gautam and Narayan Kaji Shrestha yesterday. Efforts to meet the prime minister and president this evening, however, did not materialise.
The delegation is in Nepal at the invitation of NCP-affiliated youth association. Chief of the association Ram Prasad Sapkota said a Nepali youth delegation to Venezuela a month ago had extended the invitation.
“These visits are a regular process,” he said.
Sapkota said all 15 members of the delegation were affiliated to JPSUV, the youth wing of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela Youth. Of them, four are lawmakers and three are junior ministers.
Sapkota claimed the government had nothing to do with the visit. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also confirmed that the government was not involved in the ‘personal’ visit.
He said the purpose of the visit was to communicate with the world, especially countries with significant presence of communists, about the ongoing crisis in Venezuela and seek support for Venezuelan President Maduro.
When asked whether his organisation supported Maduro, Sapkota said they had been of the view that a democratically elected president could not be removed from the streets anywhere in the world.
Sapkota claimed the delegation, which arrived in Kathmandu from Vietnam, would also visit China and North Korea before returning home. The delegation will leave Kathmandu tomorrow.
NCP leader Balaram Baskota coordinated the delegation’s visit to the Parliament today.
Observers said the ruling party should be careful about its activities. “There is a section in Nepali politics that wants to establish that the present government is inclined towards authoritarian communist tendencies, although it is a duly elected government. Therefore, extra caution is required from the side of our ruling party,” said foreign policy expert Nischal Nath Pandey.
A version of this article appears in print on July 16, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.