Delegation of the European Union to the
UN and other international organisations in Geneva

Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU on Venezuela

16/07/2019 - 15:09
EU Delegation to the UN in Geneva - Press releases


The political crisis and economic collapse in Venezuela continues to take a heavy toll in the population as illustrated by the 4 million people that have fled the country. The crisis also remains a major source of instability for the region. The recently published report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, confirms in a clear and detailed manner the extent and seriousness of the human rights violations, the erosion of the rule of law and the dismantlement of democratic institutions in the country. The tragic death of Captain Acosta Arévalo while in custody of the Venezuelan security forces is a stark example of such continued deterioration of the human rights situation.


The EU strongly supports the findings of the UN HCHR report and calls upon the regime for an immediate halt of the widespread human rights violations and to engage in full cooperation with the OHCHR and all UN Special Procedures to secure the implementation of the report’s recommendations. The EU stands ready to assist the UN HCHR in her efforts to ensure that the fundamental rights of all Venezuelans are fully protected. In light of the grave situation as reported by the UN HCHR, the EU is ready to start work towards applying targeted measures for those members of the security forces involved in torture and other serious violations of human rights.


The EU reaffirms that the underlying multidimensional crisis requires an urgent political solution. This can only be achieved through a peaceful, democratic and Venezuelan-owned process leading to free and fair presidential elections. Therefore it welcomes and supports the resumption in Barbados of the talks facilitated by the Government of Norway, which should remain the main channel to overcome the crisis. It calls for genuine engagement and the necessary flexibility to urgently reach a result that enables transparent and internationally monitored elections, the reinstitutionalisation of the relevant public powers and that lays the basis for national reconciliation and economic recovery.


In case there are no concrete results from the ongoing negotiations, the EU will further expand its targeted measures. It also recalls that these measures can be reversed in case substantial progress is made towards the restoration of democracy, rule of law and human rights in Venezuela.


The EU underlines the need for increased coordination amongst all international actors in support of the current work towards a negotiated outcome towards free and fair elections. In this regard, the EU will continue its efforts, including through the International Contact Group and its Special Adviser, to support such a peaceful electoral path as a way out of the Venezuelan crisis


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