Organisation of American States summit in Mexico

Organisation of American States summit in Mexico

The 34 members of the Organization of American States will meet in Cancun today to hold their annual General Assembly,

Organisation of American States

Photo: COHA

The 34 members of the Organization of American States will meet in Cancun today to hold their annual General Assembly, where hemispheric policies and treaties are reviewed, debated, and voted on.

This year’s assembly is expected to focus on the crisis in Venezuela, which has experienced severe economic and political instability since the death of President Hugo Chavez. The past several years have seen increasingly violent clashes between protestors and regime forces, while the population suffers from rampant inflation and shortages of consumer goods.

Northern states led by the US plan to call for multiparty talks to mediate between the government and the opposition, while leftist states like Bolivia allege the US has interfered in domestic Venezuelan politics and will likely oppose outside intervention.

While the General Assembly is also expected to deal with longer term issues such as managing migration flows and integrating communication technology, Venezuela will test the body’s ability to deal with divisive crises in the Western Hemisphere.