British billionaire entrepreneur and philanthropist Richard Branson is spearheading a unique and historic concert on the Venezuelan-Colombian border, in conjunction with the beginning of the delivery of international humanitarian aid to mitigate the shortages of food and medicine generated by socialism in Venezuela.
The concert, which will gather more than a dozen international artists in an area near the Tienditas international bridge, is a clear challenge to the military blockade that the illegitimate regime of Nicolás Maduro has imposed on shipments of medicines and food sent by the United States and other countries. The bridge is the main land crossing point between the two countries, and is located just east of the city of Cucuta, in the state of Norte de Santander.
The announcement by the founder of the renowned brand Virgin Group, surprised even the most active leaders of the Venezuelan opposition, who were completely unaware of the planning of an event of this magnitude, which will have among its main attractions artists like Alejandro Sanz, Miguel Bose, Juanes, Ricardo Montaner, Carlos Vives, Fonseca, Luis Fonsi, Maluma, and Diego Torres.
“The Nicolás Maduro regime is responsible for this crisis, it refuses to allow aid to enter the country. We must end the blockade or many Venezuelans will be on the verge of starvation and death,” says Branson in the video where he announced the concert.
The participation of the prominent businessman, who is among the main organizers of the event, is one of the keys to its success, and paves the way not only for the entry of humanitarian aid to Venezuela, but also for a fundraising campaign that hopes to bring in USD $100 million.
According to Branson, the request to organize the concert was made by the interim president of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, and one of the main leaders of the Venezuelan opposition, the former mayor and current political prisoner Leopoldo López.
The impressive lineup of international pop stars in Cúcuta could lead to overflow crowds in the Colombian-Venezuelan border region. The Maduro regime might not have the capacity to maintain control of its side of the border, due to the large number of military personnel it would need to maintain the blockade, and assure its control throughout the entire region.
The largest collection center for international humanitarian aid for Venezuela is currently being assembled very close to the Tienditas bridge.
The bridge connects Colombia and Venezuela, but has been blocked for nearly two weeks by the Maduro regime, which has used shipping containers to blockade the bridge. Maduro is increasingly wary, and, in addition to military troops and police officers, has begun to use so-called “death squads”, and has released common prisoners, as well as senior citizens, in a last ditch effort to “defend the fatherland.”
Maduro has presided over economic collapse, and plummeting oil production, which has led to dire shortages of hard currency, making it difficult to import food and medicine. Millions have fled the country, mainly to neighboring Colombia and Brazil, while an estimated half million have made their way to Peru.
Maduro refuses to allow any international aid to enter the country, and remains propped up by the Venezuelan military, as well as key allies Russia and China.