Measuring the Negative Impact of Sanctions

UN Special Rapporteur Alena Douhan arrived to evaluate the impact of sanctions on human rights; the opposition hasn’t agreed on the composition of the Political Council that will restructure the caretaker presidency; Garzón’s lawyer denied his client had committed the crimes, spoke ill about the victim and revealed her identity, which had been kept anonymous to preserve her integrity.

  • UN Special Rapporteur  Alena Douhan arrived last Saturday to evaluate “the negative impact of sanctions on human rights.” The special rapporteur would start on Monday until February 12th: “I want to examine, in the spirit of cooperation and dialogue, if and how much, the sanctions have been an obstacle for human rights,” said Douhan, adding that she’ll be focusing on any negative impact and then make recommendations on how to eliminate them. Douhan is going to meet with chavismo, the diplomatic community, the civil society, other political parties, lawyers, scholars, victims and their families.
  • Provea published a letter on which a group of human rights defenders gave Alena Douhan valuable information about Venezuela, including the fact that Maduro promised Michelle Bachelet in June 2019 that he’d invite at least ten UN missions in two years, but this is the only visit he’s allowed. The mechanisms and missions that should have visited Venezuela include those to investigate forced disappearances, TSJ justices’ independence, extrajudicial executions, arbitrary detentions, torture and other cruel treatment, the rights to health, food and mental and physical health, indigenous rights. None of them has been invited and it’s urgent that they come. Douhan’s visit happens while Nicolás’s regime keeps human rights workers from Azul Positivo in jail. 
  • Maduro said on Monday that Venezuela has known how to work on its relations and that the Anti-Blockade Law creates extraordinary conditions for foreign investment. 
  • He also said that Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro avoids meeting with him because he’s afraid and assured that if he recognized him as president of Venezuela, the complicated coronavirus in the Brazilian Amazon would be different. Maduro also ratified that that mass vaccination will start in April, because the “hoarding” of the vaccine is blocking it from starting sooner. 
  • The Assembly Elected in 2015 announced the launch of the Mi Asamblea app (My Assembly) to keep deputies in contact with Venezuelans and overcome Maduro censorship. They explained that citizens will be able to access the agenda and the work done by committees. 
  • The opposition supporting Guaidó hasn’t agreed on the composition of the Political Council that will restructure the caretaker presidency and will replace the Center for Government presided by Leopoldo López. It’s not the same thing as López mentioned on Sunday about the new unity platform between political parties and civil society. There are two separate entities, the Political Council and the coalition.
  • As Emilio Graterón told Efecto Cocuyo, the Political Council will be in charge of institutional representation, foreign relations, management of assets recovered abroad and other areas. The coalition will focus on making political decisions and formalizing alliances with a “more organized operating system,” said Graterón.
  • On January 23rd, a Venezuelan woman went to a job interview in Buenos Aires and was drugged and raped by Irineo Humberto Garzón, owner of the establishment. Judge Karina Zucconi ruled that a rapist didn’t need to await trial in jail because he didn’t have a criminal record. On Monday, Garzón’s lawyer Osvaldo Cantoro denied his client had committed the crimes and spoke ill about the victim. Pablo Baqué, the victim’s lawyer responded that there was no need to speak ill about people to defend a criminal from the atrocity he committed. Judge Zucconi was accused of handling the case poorly. There’s also the fact that Garzón lied about his address. Last night, Cantoro revealed the name of the victim on TV. It had been kept anonymous to preserve her integrity, so it’s another way of violating her identity. 
  • American congressmen presented the Bolívar Law, an initiative that seeks to prohibit the U.S. to make transactions with companies tied to  Maduro’s regime, said Congresswoman María Elvira Salazar.

Naky Soto

Naky gets called Naibet at home and at the bank. She coordinates training programs for an NGO. She collects moments and turns them into words. She has more stories than freckles.