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Brazil Announces Expulsion of Top Venezuelan Diplomat

12/27/2017 - 11h44

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PATRICIA CAMPOS MELLO
FROM SÃO PAULO

Venezuelan chargé d'affaires Gerardo Antonio Delgado Maldonado was considered a persona non grata on Tuesday (the 26th) by the Brazilian government. The decision, in practical terms, means that the top diplomat will be kicked out of the country.

Brazil's Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that it is abiding by the principle of reciprocity. On Saturday (the 23rd), Venezuela's Constitutional Assembly declared Caracas-based Brazilian ambassador Ruy Pereira a persona non grata in the country.

The Brazilian government informed the Venezuelan representative of its decision.

However, Mr. Maldonado, who was approached by Folha for a comment late Tuesday, said that he had not been officially informed of the decision. "I have no plans of leaving the country before being officially informed", he said.

When someone is declared a persona non grata, they normally have 72 hours to leave the country. The ministry, however, did not stipulate a deadline for Mr. Maldonado to leave.

The reason for this is that Mr. Maldonado's counterpart, Mr. Pereira, was informed of Venezuela's decision "via the press" and still has not been officially notified. The Brazilian ministry decided to follow suit and not stipulate a deadline.

Mr. Pereira arrived in Brazil a week ago for the holiday season and will not be allowed back into Venezuela as long as the decision still stands.

Mr. Maldonado has been in charge of the Venezuelan embassy in Brasília ever since then-ambassador, Alberto Efraim Castellar Padilla, was summoned back to Venezuela in May of 2016 as a form of protesting against the impeachment of former president Dilma Rousseff.

Translated by THOMAS MATHEWSON

Read the article in the original language

Federico Parra/AFP
The president of Venezuela's Constituent Assembly Delcy Rodriguez speaks during a press conference in Caracas
The president of Venezuela's Constituent Assembly Delcy Rodriguez speaks during a press conference in Caracas

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