National peace talks held in Venezuela to end protests

Written by: IANS
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Nicolas Maduro
Caracas, Mar 1: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro opened another session of a national conference for peace on Friday, seeking to put an end to the country's weeks-long violent protests.

At the meeting, Maduro proposed turning the event into a permanent forum, reported Xinhua.

Among other measures to promote peace, Maduro called for a political liaison committee as a permanent channel of communication between various sectors in Venezuela.

He also urged right-wing student leaders, who reportedly instigated the anti-government protests starting Feb 12, to decide how they wanted to participate in the peace talks, saying he was ready to meet them at Miraflores, the Presidential Palace.

Maduro also voiced his concern about rising anti-Cuban sentiment among right-wing extremists, as evidenced by placards and banners in opposition rallies and marches.

Some 25,000 Cuban doctors and healthcare workers were in Venezuela as part of a bilateral cooperation agreement, and their lives could be endangered, said Maduro.

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