Venezuela: ICJ highlights impunity in dialogue with UN Fact-Finding Mission

The ICJ today highlighted the continuing impunity in Venezuela, reinforced by lack of judicial independence, at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

The oral statement, delivered in an interactive dialogue with the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Venezuela (IIFFM) established by the Council, read as follows:

“The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) welcomes the IIFFM report, and the efforts that allowed its preparation and delivery despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ICJ shares concern over the government’s lack of cooperation with the Fact-Finding Mission. The ICJ recalls Venezuela’s obligations under international law to ensure accountability for serious human rights violations occurring in the country.

The ICJ highlights that the violations documented in the report took place amid a gradual breakdown of democratic institutions and the rule of the law in Venezuela.

The ICJ has documented over many years the lack of judicial independence, and the absence of domestic accountability for human rights violations, which have deepened impunity.

The ICJ stresses the important contribution of the Fact-Finding Mission to accountability for serious human rights violations in Venezuela and urges the Council to extend and strengthen its mandate. The ICJ encourages the Mission to examine and report in greater detail on the causes of the violations, and long-entrenched obstacles to obtaining domestic accountability, including an analysis of the role and responsibility of individuals and institutions in the justice system for violations and impunity.[1]

Finally, the ICJ invites the experts to elaborate further on their recommendation to States on ‘initiating legal actions against individuals responsible for violations and crimes identified’ in the report.”


[1] See further ICJ, Practitioners Guide no. 13: Judicial Accountability.

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