Washington, DC March 25, 2019
The Arcadia Foundation reiterates its greatest concern about the complex humanitarian crisis that Venezuela is currently going through. The international community, governments, institutions, international bodies and civil society of the world understand the reality and the seriousness of the situation that Venezuela and the Venezuelans are experiencing.
The democratic governments of the world have been clear in the defense of democracy in the country and for the respect of the Human Rights of Venezuelans in moments when they have been violated by a tyrannical regime that has decided to remain in power by all means.
We appreciate the information provided by Mrs. Michelle Bachelet, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, who has referred to the Human Rights Council about the situation in Venezuela and has presented the undeniable reality that the country is going through, taking into account the information provided by a technical team from the High Commissioner’s Office that in the field has verified this reality.
However, in relation to the statements and the report presented by Mrs. Bachelet, especially the point number two of her presentation, it is regrettable to note that the High Commissioner has incurred a serious inaccuracy in stating that Venezuela or the Venezuelan people have been subject to sanctions in 2017, when that never happened.
“Although this devastating social and economic crisis began before the imposition of the first economic sanctions in 2017…” (sic)
All the sanctions from 2015 until the beginning of 2019 have been of a personal nature for the more than 150 public officials of the Venezuelan regime and their front men and never
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against the State nor the Venezuelan people. In addition, sanctions had been individual until 2019 when the regime reaffirmed its tyrannical character and the international community decided to resort to sanctions to force them to respect Human Rights in the country.
The Arcadia Foundation must specify in this regard that the unilateral measures adopted by some States and some groups of States are legal and a legitimately respond to the reality of the situation in the country and that, distinctly to what was affirmed by the High Commissioner, said measures “Sanctions” were directed in a selective and individual manner to representatives of the Chavista regime involved in serious violations of Human Rights, in international crimes, in acts of corruption and others crimes of international transcendence.
It is equally regrettable that Mrs. Bachelet declares, after recognizing the Venezuelan reality, that those sanctions could aggravate the situation in the country when, in reality, these unilateral measures seek full respect for Human Rights in the country that should be its fundamental objective.
The High Commissioner must show her greater independence and proper autonomy to her high position and in all cases adjust to realities and facts, which requires that, in case of any inaccuracy and wrong assessment, should publicly rectify. These are not measures contrary to international law, much less measures against Venezuelans, but rather the opposite, to strengthen the rule of law and full respect for all human rights of all citizens in the country.
The Arcadia Foundation considers that this is not the time for intermediate and imprecise statements that leave space for actions contrary to Human Rights, and therefore requests the United Nations and all relevant international bodies to express themselves in a clear and categorical manner, with certain facts in favor of respect for the Human Rights of Venezuelans.