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Comment by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein on Venezuela

Spanish

GENEVA (1 August 2017) – “I am deeply concerned that opposition leaders Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma have again been taken into custody by Venezuelan authorities after their house arrest was revoked. I urge the Government to immediately release all those being held for exercising their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, association and expression.

I also regret that at least 10 people reportedly died in Venezuela over the weekend amid demonstrations over the Constituent Assembly elections. The investigations into these deaths must be carried out in a prompt, effective and independent manner, with the full cooperation of the Government.

I urge the authorities not to make an already extremely volatile situation even worse through the use of excessive force, including through violent house raids by security forces that have occurred in various parts of the country.

I appeal to all parties to refrain from the use of violence.”

The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention considers the detention of both Lopez and Ledezma to be arbitrary. The opinions of the Working Group on these cases can be found here:

Lopez: http://daccess-ods.un.org/access.nsf/Get?Open&DS=A/HRC/WGAD/2014/26&Lang=E;

Ledezma: http://daccess-ods.un.org/access.nsf/Get?Open&DS=A/HRC/WGAD/2015/27&Lang=E

ENDS

For more information and media requests, please contact Ravina Shamdasani: rshamdasani@ohchr.org or +41 22 917 9169

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