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  HOME | Venezuela (Click here for more Venezuela news)

VenEconomy: Spanish Senators – Democracy Breakdown, Violation of Human Rights in Venezuela are Two Undeniable Facts

From the Editors of VenEconomy

The sun cannot be covered with one finger, and neither can the breakdown of democracy and the violation of human rights in Venezuela.

Last week, the watchful eye of the international community gave two warnings on this disrespect for the basic rights of citizens by the government of Nicolás Maduro.

First of all, a group of experts of the United Nations and the Inter-American Human Rights System expressed their deep regret that a TV show aired by state-run television network Venezolana de Televisión (VTV) and hosted by Diosdado Cabello, the head of the Parliament, attempted to defame and intimidate the defenders of human rights. They specifically complained about three recent "unjustifiable televised retaliation incidents":

1) The defamation of several human rights defenders and their organizations, before and after their participation in the hearings on Venezuela before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights at its headquarters in Washington, D.C., in March of 2015.

2) That the details on schedules and private meetings provided by the human rights defenders had been shared during the broadcast, while the director of the National Telecommunications Commission (Conatel), William Castillo, made false allegations via his Twitter account that they had received international funds to spread negative information about Venezuela.

3) That during the broadcast derogatory statements were made against several members of the civil society and their organizations after collaborating with the UN Human Rights Committee during the review of the fourth periodic report of Venezuela in Geneva on June 29-30.

Now, a group of Spanish senators traveled to Caracas over the weekend to pay a visit to the political prisoners and "help get things on track, in the sense that the elections to be held in December are as free as possible…" and help open a space for dialogue. Unfortunately, that was a visit not made possible due to the arbitrary will of the Government – and the televised insults of Maduro – with the exception of a meeting with Antonio Ledezma, the Metropolitan Mayor of Caracas and a political prisoner held under house arrest.

These parliamentarians, in light of the crisis they witnessed on their trip to Venezuela, signed the so-called "Statement of Caracas," also signed by senators from different political parties in Spain (from left, center-right to right), as much as by parliamentarians from Uruguay and Peru. In addition, they confirmed there is an existing threat.

From there, they decided to:

1) Call on all parliamentarians to join other "parliamentarians all over the world for democracy in Venezuela" so that they serve as interlocutors to promote understanding between all the actors of the Venezuelan political life.

2) Urge the government of Venezuela to allow the return of exiles and the release of all political prisoners, as well as to ensure them the full exercise of their rights as citizens.

3) Express their concern at the repeated practice of disqualification of opposition leaders for political purposes.

4) Urge Venezuela’s electoral authority to ensure a fair and qualified international observation for the parliamentary elections to be held in December of 2015.

5) Call on all inter-parliamentary organizations, particularly the Inter-Parliamentary Union, to ensure respect for the human rights of the Venezuelan parliamentarians.

6) Perform actions that contribute to disseminate information about the current situation of Venezuela in our respective countries.

But, since a stubborn blindness and obstinacy are two intrinsic characteristics of this government, its highest representative (Maduro) had another outburst of anger after learning that the OAS would receive Henrique Capriles, one of the leaders of the democratic unity, at its headquarters in Washington on Monday. And emulating his predecessor Hugo Chávez, in a similar adverse circumstance, Maduro assured that the OAS" is a worthless piece of garbage, dominated by an imperial bureaucracy that is plunging it into misery every time more." He said, perhaps seeing his government’s own reflection in a mirror, that the OAS "is useless."

VenEconomy has been a leading provider of consultancy on financial, political and economic data in Venezuela since 1982.

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