Venezuela: UN to investigate 'unprecedented human rights disaster'

Amnesty International has welcomed the UN Human Rights Council’s announcement of an investigation into the ongoing human rights violations and crimes under international law in Venezuela.

The human rights body adopted a resolution today creating a fact-finding mission to investigate abuses under Nicolas Maduro’s government, including extrajudicial executions, torture and enforced disappearances.

The human rights crisis has affected millions of people. More than 4.3 million people have been forced to leave the country due to human rights violations, most of whom are now in neighbouring countries in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Meanwhile, a second resolution focusing on the strengthening of cooperation by the Venezuelan government and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet and her Office, was also adopted today.

Erika Guevara-Rosas, Amnesty International’s Americas director, said:

“We welcome the action taken today by members of the UN Human Rights Council. It was high time for the international community, led by countries in the Americas, to listen to the long-forgotten victims of what is an unprecedented human rights disaster in the region.  

“In fulfilling its mandate, the UN Fact-Finding mission will need to address the wider context in which the policy of state repression has taken place - a dire humanitarian emergency in which essential human rights such as food, water and health have become out-of-reach luxuries for most people in Venezuela.

“This resolution responds to calls for accountability made by victims, civil society organisations and states in the region, as they have not found any remedy in national courts and the government of Nicolas Maduro has isolated itself from any form of regional scrutiny.”     

Human rights crisis in Venezuela

Since 2014, Amnesty has been documenting and speaking out against the grave human rights crisis in Venezuela. For the latest, see:

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