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Gustavo Petro and a New Role for Colombia in the Venezuela Political Negotiations

Date & Time

Apr. 25, 2023
2:00pm – 3:00pm ET


Online Only


Following his meeting with President Biden in Washington, Colombian President Gustavo Petro returned rapidly to Bogotá to organize a high-profile conference on Venezuela’s prolonged political crisis. The summit, scheduled for April 25, represents a major shift in Colombia’s approach to its troubled neighbor. After reestablishing diplomatic relations with Venezuelan’s authoritarian government and reopening their shared border, President Petro is now attempting to promote dialogue between the government and the democratic opposition.

How does the Bogotá summit fit in the Norway-supported, Mexico City negotiations process? Will President Petro, Colombia’s first leftist leader, win the trust of the Venezuelan opposition? Will his relationship with his Venezuelan counterpart, Nicolás Maduro, give him an opportunity to negotiate concessions that would permit reasonably free and fair elections in 2024? Should the United States and other international actors support Colombia’s initiative, or does Colombia’s engagement risk undermining efforts to isolate Maduro’s repressive regime? Is there a similar potential role for Brazil’s new leftist president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva?


Hosted By

Latin America Program

The Wilson Center’s prestigious Latin America Program provides non-partisan expertise to a broad community of decision makers in the United States and Latin America on critical policy issues facing the Hemisphere. The Program provides insightful and actionable research for policymakers, private sector leaders, journalists, and public intellectuals in the United States and Latin America. To bridge the gap between scholarship and policy action, it fosters new inquiry, sponsors high-level public and private meetings among multiple stakeholders, and explores policy options to improve outcomes for citizens throughout the Americas. Drawing on the Wilson Center’s strength as the nation’s key non-partisan policy forum, the Program serves as a trusted source of analysis and a vital point of contact between the worlds of scholarship and action.  Read more

Brazil Institute

The Brazil Institute—the only country-specific policy institution focused on Brazil in Washington—works to foster understanding of Brazil’s complex reality and to support more consequential relations between Brazilian and US institutions in all sectors. The Brazil Institute plays this role by producing independent research and programs that bridge the gap between scholarship and policy, and by serving as a crossroads for leading policymakers, scholars and private sector representatives who are committed to addressing Brazil’s challenges and opportunities.  Read more

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