18,000 murders and 15,500 arbitrary arrests


Washington Correspondent

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A devastating report prepared by the Organization of American States (OAS) holds the regime of Nicolas Maduro of more than 18,000 murders, 15,500 arbitrary detentions and at least 650 documented cases of torture from 2014 to the present. The study, prepared by the OAS Special Adviser on the Responsibility to Protect, Jared Genser, for the Secretary General Luis Almagro, affirms that they are committing crimes against humanity in Venezuela, by a regime that is now preparing to take control of the legislative power through elections lacking in transparency and rejected by the international community.

One of the main conclusions of this report is that the International Criminal Court is not doing his job in the face of the serious humanitarian crisis in the Caribbean country, the worst in the history of the continent. The prosecutor of the Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, initiated an investigation into the situation in Venezuela on her own initiative in February 2018, and was supported in this work by Argentina, Canada, Colombia, Chile, Paraguay and Peru.

But Bensouda has not come to a definitive conclusion, despite nearly three years. The report assures that “the slowness of the examination seems absolutely indifferent to the widespread, serious and devastating crimes that are being committed. As a consequence, the regime feels emboldened to commit more crimes, under the impression that it can act with total impunity.

Impunity

The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, affirmed that “the Venezuelan regime has been allowed to operate with impunity. Every day of inaction on the part of the international community increases the suffering of the Venezuelan people. We call on the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to act and show the world that crimes against humanity will not go unpunished.

«Our report brings to life the extraordinary suffering of the people of Venezuela, inflicted by Nicolás Maduro and his regime. The only reasonable conclusion that can be reached when examining the scale and extent of human rights abuses, such as extrajudicial executions, arbitrary detentions and the imposition of living conditions designed to cause great suffering or death, is that these actions constitute crimes against humanity under the Rome Statute, which established the International Criminal Court, ”said Jared Genser, OAS Special Adviser on the Responsibility to Protect. “It is therefore both inexplicable and shocking that, after almost three years examining the situation, the prosecutor Fatou Bensouda has not opened an investigation into the alleged crimes,” he added.

According to Genser in the report, which is 145 pages long, “tens of millions of people suffer from great sufferings or they are subjected to a serious attack on their physical integrity and health due to the continuing humanitarian crisis caused by the regime, as evidenced by statistics on malnutrition, hunger, disease, and lack of access to water and health care. The crisis has also caused the premature death of at least tens of thousands of people. ‘

Control with hunger

One of the conclusions of this detailed study is that for the Maduro regime, hunger and health care are methods of population control and annihilation of opponents. “Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Venezuelans are being persecuted as a result of the regime’s intentional and organized policies to deny food and health care to their real or imaginary opponents,” writes Genser, who presents the same report at headquarters. from the OAS this Wednesday.

The Maduro regime continues to impose, according to this analysis, repressive measures against dissent and attacking opponents with other traditional methods: excessive force, arbitrary detentions, torture and extrajudicial executions. “Countless cases of victims and thousands of deaths are recorded, and the specter of widespread famine extends,” says Genser, a respected American human rights lawyer.

Genser affirms that “the situation in Venezuela continues to be dire. Does not stop increasing poverty, hyperinflation, huge shortages and disease, and the country faces major shortages. In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of Venezuelan refugees and migrants fleeing the crisis. In October 2020, the OAS estimated the number of Venezuelan refugees to rise to 5.5 million, making them “one of the largest groups of displaced populations in the world.”

Inexplicable delay

The report in question urges the Criminal Court and Prosecutor Bensouda to advance their instructions as their delay is “as surprising as it is inexplicable, since the long delay has occurred despite the fact that the situation meets all the relevant criteria that should have been result in a more expeditious examination of the case ”. Genser affirms that among other reasons, the urgency of the case “is due to the recrudescence persistent and widespread crimes“And” to the existence of reliable information on crimes publicly available. “

This report says that there is also a long list of suspects com responsible for these atrocities, which does not end with those who perpetrate these murders and torture. “Responsibility for the crimes listed in this report is not limited to the immediate and direct perpetrators. Officials of the regime in Venezuela have both individual criminal responsibility and command responsibility for these crimes, “he says.

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