Venezuelan Government, ECLAC assess region’s challenges over COVID-19

The government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean discussed the challenges posed by the spread of cOVID-19 in the region during a video conference held on Thursday, March 2, by Sectorial Vice President of Social and Territorial Development Aristóbulo Istúriz and the ECLAC Executive Secretary Alicia Bárcena.

During the conversation, Istúriz presented a report on how the pandemic has been addressed in the Latin American country and its impact on the social sector.

“We have a social, humanist model whose center is men and women. Our model compels us to have human rights as a reference,” he said.

He added that, Venezuela fosters and guarantees, as a state policy, the rights to education, health, housing, work and food.

Notwithstanding, Istúriz complained that this model has been subjected to a “criminal blockade,” as the result of unilateral coercive measures imposed by the U.S: government on the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

The so-called “sanctions,” however, “have forced us to strengthen our social policies to protect the Venezuelan people. In the midst of difficulties, we have guaranteed our people’s rights. This has enhanced the development of social policies.”

These unilateral coercive measures have also led us to further strengthen our bilateral relations with Russia, China, Cuba, Iran and Turkey, assured Sectorial Vice President Istúriz.

Likewise, he stressed the cooperation ties Venezuela has established with the UN System and its organizations.

Istúriz explained the scope of the Carnet de la Patria, a social protection tool implemented by the Venezuelan Government in 2017.

Currently, the Patria online system features a survey designed to locate potential COVID-19 cases in the Latin American country. More than 16 million Venezuelans have responded the survey’s questions about coronavirus symptoms.

At the video conference, Sectorial Vice President of Social and Territorial Development Aristóbulo Istúriz was joined by representatives of the Ministry of People’s Power for Planning, the Ministry of People’s Power for Communes and Social Protection, and Cristiani Engelbrech, director of the International Organizations Department of the Venezuelan Foreign Affairs Ministry.

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