- Title: Venezuelan FM claimes victory after heated OAS meeting
- Date: 21st June 2017
- Summary: CANCUN, QUINTANA ROO, MEXICO (JUNE 20, 2017) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) DIRECTOR OF HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH AMERICAS DIVISION, JOSE MIGUEL VIVANCO, SAYING: "I think that a forceful resolution, a declaration from this organisation is probably the only realistic way to avoid blood in Venezuela. In the last 70 days there have been grave human rights violations by state actors and groups of armed criminals called 'colectivos' with a licence to carry weapons and to kill those who are on the streets of Venezuela who are protesting peacefully. If there is no effective intervention in the situation by the regional community, I get the impression that it will keep getting worse. If there is no clear warning on behalf of this organisation, for example that current and future human rights violations will not be tolerated and that there be justice for these atrocities, my impression is that Maduro's regime will take this as carte blanche to continue what it wants to do in Venezuela."
- Embargoed: 5th July 2017 01:35
- Keywords: Delcy Rodriguez Nicolas Maduro Organziation of American States
- Location: CANCUN, QUINTANA ROO, MEXICO
- City: CANCUN, QUINTANA ROO, MEXICO
- Country: Mexico
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0036M34MYR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Venezuela's Foreign Minister declared victory for the OPEC nation on Tuesday (June 20) for staving off a resolution against it by the Organisation of American States, telling media that the US was left begging at the body's General Assembly.
Governments from across the Americas on Tuesday chastised Venezuela's socialist leadership for its handling of a political and economic crisis, prompting the OPEC nation's Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez to call the critics "lapdogs of imperialism."
The United States, Brazil and 10 other members of the 34-nation OAS issued a letter accusing Venezuela of undermining democracy, failing to feed its people and violating rights.
It called for the release of political prisoners, respect for rights, an election timetable, a "humanitarian channel" to ship food and medicine, and the creation of a group or mechanism to help "effective dialogue among Venezuelans."
The 12 nations also called on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to abandon a July 30 vote for a super-body with powers to rewrite the country's constitution. Critics see Maduro's move as a ploy to hold on to power.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez fired back, criticising Mexico's rights record and highlighting poverty, violence and migration in Honduras and other nations.
Human Rights Watch's director for the Americas told Reuters the situation in Venezuela was deteriorating.
According to reports, 75 people have been killed in protests in Venezuela in recent weeks amidst public anger over food shortages, a flailing economy and rampant crime.
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