Venezuela: ICJ Commissioner, Carlos Ayala, challenges effect of Venezuela’s denunciation of the OAS Charter

In a document presented to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, ICJ Vice President Carlos Ayala explains that Venezuela’s denunciation of the OAS Charter remains without effect.

In April 2017, Venezuela lodged a notification with the Secretary General of the Organisation of American States (OAS) that Venezuela denounced the OAS Charter in order the withdraw its membership from the organisation.

In a document presented to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on 4 December 2018, ICJ Vice President Carlos Ayala explains why the denunciation is unconstitutional and violates binding principles of international law.

According to Professor Ayala, who served as President of the Inter-American Commission between 1996 and 1999, the OAS Charter holds a constitutional status under Venezuela’s domestic law that does not permit withdrawal from the Charter on the basis of political interests.

Additionally, the Charter establishes that it will cease to be in force following a notification of denunciation only after the denouncing State has fulfilled its obligations under the Charter. Since Venezuela is the subject of several pending matters concerning its purported failure to fulfil Charter obligations, its denunciation remains without effect.

Venezuela-OAS denunciation-Advocacy-2018-SPA (see full document, in Spanish)