The European Union thanks the High Commissioner for her report.
We highly appreciate and support the OHCHR’s monitoring role in Venezuela and the efforts of the High Commissioner and her office to support the authorities in the field of human rights. We take note of signing of the Letter of Understanding in September 2019 by the Venezuelan authorities and the OHCHR, and we call for an increased access of the OHCHR office on the ground.
The EU expresses profound concern over the grave human rights violations in Venezuela described in the recent report by the UN High Commissioner. We voice our deep concern over the repression against political opponents, persistent cases of arbitrary detentions and torture, extrajudicial killings and violence, including against women and children, by Venezuelan security forces and violations of economic and social rights. Increasing restrictions and attacks against freedom of expression and freedom of media, as well as the deterioration of the human rights situation of indigenous peoples, are also a matter of concern.
The EU is deeply concerned about the cases of killings in the context of security operations, as well as continued shrinking of civic space with attacks on human rights defenders, media and members of the opposition. We reiterate that the crisis in Venezuela can only be addressed through a peaceful and negotiated solution involving and owned by the people of Venezuela. This solution must be based on credible transparent and inclusive democractic elections, return to the rule of law and restoration of the independence of judiciary the recognition and respect of their results in accordance with the Constitution, the immediate and irreversible release of all political prisoners and the upholding of human rights. Therefore, we call the Maduro autohorities to fully implement the recommendations made by the High Commissioner in July 2019 and July 2020. We also underline the OHCHR recommendations for a greater transparency and efficiency of the Justice system in Venezuela.
At this stage we would like to call on the authorities to fully cooperate with the OHCHR and the Fact-finding Mission established by this Council. We also encourage the Venezuelan authorities to continue discussions on the opening a fully-fledged OHCHR country office in Venezuela.