Declaration on Venezuela

Meeting of the SI Council at the United Nations in Geneva, 1-2 July 2016

Original: Spanish

The Socialist International expresses its deep concern at the worsening of the political, social and institutional Venezuelan crisis and deplores that the government of president Nicolás Maduro promotes the conflict between the established powers by making use of the Supreme Court of Justice against autonomous decisions of the legislative branch, delivering judgements that clearly infringe on the decisions of this legislative body and violate the spirit of the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, and compromise the democratic values based on mutual respect and the autonomy of the powers of the State.

The Socialist International reiterates its call for the liberation of the political prisoners Leopoldo López, Manuel Rosales and Antonio Ledezma, as well as the students who are imprisoned without trial. Stopping the flagrant violation of due process is part of the corrections that the judicial bodies and the government itself should make. The government must put an end to the criminalisation of civic, peaceful and democratic protests, as well as the repression exercised by the State security forces.

The Socialist International advocates respect for the process envisaged in the Constitution for the convening of the presidential recall referendum and that this may take place this current year. In this regard, the Socialist International demands that the electoral and administrative authorities of the country carry out a transparent and unfettered verification of the signatures of millions of Venezuelan citizens that demand the carrying out of this referendum. The International expresses its concern to achieve immediate solutions to the grave problems of shortages of food and medicines that confront the Venezuelan people and to open the way to solve the political and social conflicts which if they remain unresolved could result in unpredictable consequences for the country and the whole region.

The Socialist International welcomes the declaration of the Permanent Council of the OAS on 1 June of this year, which expresses its support to the initiative of former presidents José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero of Spain, Leonel Fernández of Dominican Republic and Martín Torrijos of Panama, in order to initiate a real and effective dialogue between the Venezuelan Government and the Opposition represented in the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) and social sectors, to find safe ways to encourage the democratic political stability, social development and economic recovery of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela within the constitutional framework and wishes that the parties in conflict will follow the electoral, civil and democratic road, within the framework of the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.