Venezuela’s Maduro and Guaido agree to cooperate in virus fight

CARACAS (AFP) – The government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and opposition leader Juan Guaido have reached an agreement to cooperate to raise funds for the fight against the coronavirus, they said on Tuesday.

With help from the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO), the two sides will coordinate efforts to seek financial resources to combat the pandemic, according to the agreement read on state television by Communications Minister Jorge Rodriquez.

Earlier, Guaido’s communica-tions team also said that a “technical cooperation plan to deal with the humanitarian coronavirus crisis” had been signed. Relations between the bitter rivals have been very tense, with Guaido recognised as interim president by dozens of countries, including the United States, after 2018 elections he said were rigged.

The agreement, signed on Monday in Caracas, establishes “priority” measures for dealing with the pandemic, including detection of active COVID-19 cases, epidemiological monitoring and timely treatment of those infected.

The two sides have so far not confirmed an estimate for the plan and precise details.

Commuters wearing face masks ride a bus in Caracas, Venezuela. PHOTO: AP