Venezuela: Hard-hitting UN report backs claims of crimes against humanity and identifies possible perpetrators

The Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Venezuela, created by the UN Human Rights Council in September 2019, presented its conclusions in its first report to the Council today during its 45th session. Responding to the findings, Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International, said:

“Amnesty International condemned the probable commission of crimes against humanity in Venezuela in May 2019. In a milestone for the victims of human rights violations, the much anticipated and hard-hitting report of the Fact-Finding Mission on Venezuela endorses this serious denouncement and supports the thousands of victims in their pursuit of justice that has been denied to them in their country. We share the UN’s call to the international justice system, including the International Criminal Court, to guarantee the rights of truth, justice, reparation and non-repetition.”

“The Fact-Finding Mission’s report echoes and expands upon the denunciations that Venezuelan and international human rights organizations have made in recent years. The authorities under the command of Nicolás Maduro continue to commit grave human rights violations and crimes under international law, such as extrajudicial executions, torture, arbitrary detentions and excessive use of force. The mandate of this international scrutiny mechanism must undoubtedly be renewed and strengthened. To fail to do so would be to turn our backs on the victims, on truth and on justice.”

In August, 84 national and international human rights organizations called on states at the UN Human Rights Council to renew and strengthen the important mandate of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Venezuela during its 45th session. States should ensure that the Fact-Finding Mission has sufficient funding and is empowered to collect, consolidate, preserve and analyze evidence for future prosecutions or other accountability purposes, including international justice mechanisms, in order to avoid impunity for crimes under international law and gross human rights violations committed in Venezuela.

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