Diplomatic relations between Brazil and Venezuela reached an all-time low with the former electing far-right President Jair Bolsonaro in 2018. Now, almost two years on, the grave is being dug even deeper. In its latest demonstration of hostility toward the Nicolás Maduro administration in Caracas, the Brazilian government moved to make all of the Venezuelan left-wing leader’s diplomats personae non gratae in the country. In practical terms, these staff members are allowed to remain in Brazil, but they have been stripped of their diplomatic status, along with other immunities and protections ensured around the world.
The decision came as little surprise, from a government that recognizes Mr. Maduro as Venezuela’s “illegitimate” leader. After the administration in Caracas publicly demanded answers from Brazil over what it called the country’s “criminal negligence” in facing the Covid-19 pandemic, the Bolsonaro government moved to further isolate Mr. Maduro’s diplomatic representation in Brazil.