TOPIC BRIEFS

The Venezuelan Crisis - Humanitarian Perspective

Riots, protests, and political corruption have struck in the nation of Venezuela, contributing to various consequences within the region, including a humanitarian crisis. The Venezuelan crisis began with the presidency of Hugo Chavez, and continued with the current President Nicolas Maduro, who maintains the same policies as his predecessor. Venezuela is currently suffering a major food and medicine shortage, a humanitarian crisis. A large number of people are in desperate need of medical help but face extreme difficulties in acquiring such facilities due to the corruption and ongoing crisis. Having undergone an 85% shortage in medicines as well as a 90% shortage in medical supplies, Venezuela is working its way up the list of the world’s top poorest countries. 

 

The nation had already been facing inconsistent food and medicine shortages, and since then, the issue has developed, progressed and worsened after Nicholas Maduro was elected as president of Venezuela. Although this crisis has had many negative effects on the economy, Venezuela is also currently facing a major humanitarian crisis. The people of Venezuela are suffering of various diseases and health risks due to the lack of resources, high costs of food, and shortages in food and medicines. This has resulted in increased child death rates, tuberculosis, malaria, as well as whooping cough. In 2016 there were around 240,613 affirmed cases of malaria; a 76% increase from 2015. 

 

Furthermore, Venezuela is currently facing a refugee crisis. Due to the increased shortages in food and medicine as well as poor humanitarian conditions, around 2.5-3 million people sought refuge in other countries in search for a better and safer life. The reason behind this is simple, the corruption in the Venezuelan government. Venezuela is losing hundreds of thousands of citizens every year and this has led to a major downfall in the economy and government as a whole. 

The Venezuelan Crisis - Economic

Perspective

The root of this monetary breakdown, surrounded with regards to the Great Recession, years after the improvement of the extraction of flighty hydrocarbons in the United States, demonstrated a large scale financial wonder of incredible significance for the district. China's log jam, an unfaltering increment in oil creation, and stable interest produced an excess of this asset that caused a drop in costs of reference raw petroleum, West Texas Intermediate(WTI), and Brent Crude, falling in 2014 from $100 a barrel to $50 a barrel, and causing troublesome changes in the economy of Venezuela (see 2010s oil overabundance). 

Attributable to high oil saves, absence of approaches on private property and low settlements, by 2012, of each 100 dollars, more than 90 originated from oil and its subsidiaries. With the fall in oil costs in mid-2015, the nation confronted an intense fall in incomes of the US cash alongside items. 

Moreover, the administration has not made arrangement changes to adjust to the low oil cost. In mid-2016, The Washington Post revealed the official cost of state-retailed petroleum was underneath US$.01 per gallon, and the official state cash conversion standard esteemed the US dollar at what the bootleg market did. 

In November 2017, The Economist assessed Venezuela's obligation at $105 billion US Dollars and its stores at $10 billion US dollars. 

August 24, 2017, President Trump forced authorizes on the state obligation of Venezuela which restricted exchanges with state obligation of Venezuela incorporating the investment in the red rebuilding. November 13, 2017, the specialized default time frame finished and Venezuela didn't pay coupons on its dollar Eurobonds. This caused a cross-default on other dollar bonds. November 30 ISDA panel comprising of the 15 greatest banks conceded default on state obligation commitments which thus involved installments on CDS. 

As indicated by Cbonds, there are 20 global obligations of Venezuela that are perceived to be in default. The general measure of defaulted commitments is equivalent to 36 billion dollars.

The Venezuelan Crisis - Social

Perspective

Since the Cold War, many countries have used a certain strategy to justify their intervention in transnational conflict by saying that it works to ensure international peace and security and defends freedom. Many countries have used this type of strategy to intervene in regional crises acting in the name of the international community. It has been repeatedly demonstrated as military forces have made their way into foreign countries In the fight for “peace”. Although, the truth of the matter is that in many cases, as we’ve seen over the course of history, the fight for peace ends up being a fight against peace. Countries use their intervention in the conflict to their advantage for reasons like oil, petrol and other valuable resources. The leaders of the countries win public support by persuading people that these interventions act in the name of peace, justice, democracy and civilization. Currently, conflicts in Syria, Iraq and Ukraine are bringing light to outside transnational military intervention and as more conflicts emerge, we can expect more detrimental military intervention to occur. Which is why the need for a solution to these issues is essential!

Measures to ensure responsible military intervention in transnational conflicts

At some point in history Venezuela was the richest country in South America. This was due to the biggest oil reserves in the world which was used correctly at the time. Oil reserves in Venezuela were bigger than oil reserves in Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Iraq. In addition to that, its democratic government was praised all throughout history. Today, Venezuela is going through a crisis where they are facing the largest inflation rate in the world which outgrows the inflation rate in which the US faced during the era of the great depression. Due to this growing inflation rate faced by Venezuela, disruption is created and food/medicine is inaccessible by the citizens of the country. This had also affected the murder rate in Venezuela as it is currently growing to mean that it is disturbing the daily lives of Venezuelan citizens in a major way. These conditions create a dangerous social sphere around the country, leading to an upbringing of a social crisis due to the economic crash that portrays the current situation in Venezuela. A pattern was noticed when it came to this crisis and it is that after the election of President Nicolas Maduro all the problems mentioned above began to rise at an exceeding rate. Maduro, instead of leaving office has decided to consolidate his power, thus, bringing the country closer to authoritarian rule. In December 2015, Maduro’s political ambition became evident when the MUD (Democratic Unity Round Table) won a two-thirds majority vote in the National Assembly, putting Maduros rule at risk. The first action Maduro decided to take was to rule out justices in the supreme court whom he had seemed to be against him and place others who are loyal to him. This was just a build-up to the decision which was to come during the March of the year after where the Supreme Court ruled to strip opposition-led National Assembly of its powers. This was a big move coming from the court especially with people knowing what Maduro did a few months back. This led to protests all over the streets of Venezuela as people did not like the power that was being given to the president since it was slowly turning the country less democratic. Even though the ruling had been reversed only a few days later, the damage had already been done and protests continued to grow to leave hundreds dead and thousands injured. This was a major factor to social instability spreading around the country as there were more crimes happening over time. Maduro then decided to create a new Assembly (National Constituent Assembly) which was granted the right to change the Venezuelan constitution and basically ruled out the MUD thus taking its place. This left Maduro no opposition with his rule. Hugo Chavez, Maduro’s predecessor, was a more charismatic leader that tried to fix the social corruption of the country through fixing the economic inequality that was present at the time. He did this by using the profit made by petroleum in the country in order to boost social-welfare programs. However, in 2014 when Maduro came to power, oil prices plummeted and all the programs that were set by Chavez plummeted with it. This was when Maduro began the crisis by having a constant currency rate for the upper-class citizens while the rest of the country would face devastating inflation in the currency since most currency used by normal citizens would-be black-market currency. This leads to protests on the streets and especially after the settlement of the National Constituent assembly, protests turned violent while Maduro’s government would try to create the illusion of public support. In order for Venezuela to go back to its rich democratic ways, a solution to the social aspect of the crisis is needed so that the issue does not enflame.