General Prosecutor Luisa Ortega Díaz issued a statement against TSJ ruling N° 378, requesting clarifications about the progressive development of human rights, since the ruling is a step backwards; about the validity of participative democracy “because this ruling seems to eliminate it” and about the need to establish whether sovereignty resides in the people, because the ruling reduces it to its minimal expression.
She ratified that the initiative to write a new Constitution must have equal or greater participation than back in 1999 and explained that rights can’t be diminished. Last night, Ortega Díaz revealed a letter in which attorneys and prosecutors general across Ibero-America show their support for her.
The TSJ issued another ruling on Thursday legitimating apartheid and confirming that the Metro of Caracas stopped being a public service to become the PSUV’s property. Here’s the tweet they used to present it:
— TSJ Venezuela (@TSJ_Venezuela) June 1, 2017
“The request to allow opposition protesters to travel through the Metro of Caracas is inadmissible.” Now we’ll have to show our political affiliation along with the ticket.
The Ombudsman’s account
Tarek William Saab presented his report on opposition protests, counting less fatalities and nearly half the wounded acknowledged by the Prosecutor’s Office.
Focusing on people killed near “barricades” instead of the 20 deaths by firearm; concerning what he called “hate crimes” (against security officers) and ignoring the fact that most of those killed were young, he emphasized the “brutal attacks for wearing an uniform” but said nothing about the 35 officers arrested or wanted for murdering protesters. He justified the use of military tribunals in cases related to protests, but suggested that in cases not involving crimes against humanity, trials must take place before civilian courts. The rest was a list of all the regime’s violated: protecting protesters’ human rights, respecting the gradual, proportional and proportionate use of force, carrying out inspections to prevent officers from concealing or firing forbidden material and wave a greeting at the ban on pellet shotguns.
In El Paraíso
Nelson Moncada, 48th Judge of Control of Caracas’ Metropolitan Area, was murdered on Wednesday night. He was intercepted while driving home and shot several times when he tried to flee. Moncada was involved in high-profile cases such as Bassil Da Costa’s, the first person murdered in 2014 by SEBIN officers, for which the judge sent inspector José Perdomo Camacho to prison. He was also responsible for ratifying Leopoldo López’s sentence. The PO appointed the Common Crimes director and the 36th National Prosecutor to investigate the murder.
“The right keeps calling for boundless hatred causing chaos, terror and upsetting peace and stability,” an excerpt of Interior minister’s initial words. The statement confirms his clairvoyance, since he was bold enough to claim that judge Moncada’s murderer was a contract killer hired by the opposition. He said that the PNB’s Special Forces have dismantled terrorists cells and also “neutralized paramilitary groups hired by the terrorist right-wing to disguise themselves as GNB and murder protesters.”
This is a self-goal, either because he admits that security forces are so weak they can be infiltrated or because he admits that a GN disguise is necessary to murder protesters, which makes Ernesto Samper’s miserable tweet even more puzzling: “I regret judge Moncada’s murder. By going down this road, the opposition will only increase violence and push away peace in Venezuela” (tweet was later errased from the account). Even if they have their own CSI branch, it’s irresponsible to accuse the opposition for a crime that’s still under investigation.
Dismantling the State
“It’s not the first time that traitors reveal themselves and it won’t be the last. Their betrayal starts with hesitation,” said Nicolás concerning the General Prosecutor’s request to the TSJ.
He announced that Diosdado Cabello, Aristóbulo Istúriz, Delcy Rodríguez, Cilia Flores, Iris Varela and Carmen Meléndez will be candidates for the Constituyente, without clarifying if they’ll leave their posts, or if there’s going to be any cabinet changes.
At this rate, we could say the State will run out of officials –since this is their corporation, they must lead it–, but they’ve been tremendously clumsy by admitting that they don’t care about institutionality; that from now on, they need vassals, not authorities. And even though people are dying for lack of medicines and food, they’d rather pretend that the priority for Venezuelans is to keep the PSUV in power. Darío Vivas made some lousy threats against Luisa Ortega Díaz, and Tareck El Aissami did the same against Julio Borges.
Lawmaker Gilber Caro, arrested on January 11th, was presented before court yesterday. Lawyer Theresly Malavé reported that he was sentenced to prison for the crimes of treason and stealing from the Armed Forces. He’ll serve his sentence at the Tocuyito prison, Carabobo state.
Barred from running for office, with an invalid passport, beaten and now facing a lawsuit, governor Henrique Capriles joins the group of dissident authorities threatened with over 15 years in prison if they allow further protests.
The GN used pellets and tear-gas against UCAB Guayana students and arrested 12 of them.
Harrasment against residential areas by night with the help of armed civilians has become a daily scene.
Against social networks
Andrés Eloy Méndez, head of CONATEL, revealed that he has a project to regulate the use of internet and social networks, considering that there need to be stricter regulations (censorship) on that which they still don’t control. Just to be clear: the term “responsibility” in the Law on Social Responsibility in Radio and Television, has to do with the use of the State’s radio spectrum, which doesn’t apply to the Internet. Read his statements carefully and you’ll confirm that he just wants more money for the institution’s wallet (he says they lack the necessary technology for what they want to do) and that he’s lying about his purported goal: new versions of the Lista Tascón on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook users. He must consider us stupid because there are accounts that can “dominate people’s minds and create a socio-emotional atmosphere” and he launched his threat: “If people want to use social networks to express themselves, so be it, but they must answer for what they do.” By the way, Méndez is also a candidate for the Constituyente.
The march called by the Student Movement for today will head to the State-owned TV station Venezolana de Televisión (VTV), to demand true and impartial information. Communication minister Ernesto Villegas already labeled it as hostile and also claimed that judge Moncada’s murder “isn’t an isolated event in the script,” accusing the opposition, like Reverol and Samper: without evidence.Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported. Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.