Procedure : 2018/2559(RSP)
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Document selected : B8-0078/2018

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See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0078/2018

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

on the situation in Venezuela  (2018/2559(RSP))

Esteban González Pons, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Cristian Dan Preda, Luis de Grandes Pascual, David McAllister, Sandra Kalniete, Francisco José Millán Mon, Tunne Kelam, Gabriel Mato, Agustín Díaz de Mera García Consuegra, Fernando Ruas, Laima Liucija Andrikienė, Julia Pitera, Manolis Kefalogiannis, Eduard Kukan, Ivan Štefanec, Lorenzo Cesa on behalf of the PPE Group

European Parliament resolution on the situation in Venezuela  (2018/2559(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its numerous resolutions on Venezuela, in particular those of 27 February 2014 on the situation in Venezuela(1), of 18 December 2014 on the persecution of the democratic opposition in Venezuela(2), of 12 March 2015 on the situation in Venezuela(3), of 8 June 2016 on the situation in Venezuela(4) and of 27 April 2017 on the situation in Venezuela(5),

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948,

–  having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Venezuela is a party,

–  having regard to the Inter-American Democratic Charter adopted on 11 September 2001,

–  having regard to the statement of 31 March 2017 by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, on the ruling by the Venezuelan Supreme Court to take over the legislative powers of the National Assembly,

–  having regard to the warnings outlined in the Organisation of American States (OAS) reports of 30 May 2016 and 14 March 2017 on Venezuela and the call of its Secretary General for the urgent convocation of the Permanent Council under Article 20 of the Democratic Charter to discuss Venezuela’s political crisis,

–  having regard to the letter of 27 March 2017 by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (VP/HR), Federica Mogherini, on the worsening and severe political, economic and humanitarian crises in Venezuela,

–  having regard to the OAS declaration signed by 14 of its member states on 23 March 2017 demanding that Venezuela promptly schedule elections, release political prisoners and recognise its constitution’s separation of powers, among other measures,

–  having regard to the OAS Permanent Council’s Resolution of 3 April 2017 on the recent events in Venezuela,

–  having regard to the Declaration of ‘El Grupo de Lima’ of 23 January 2018 on the National Constituent Assembly’s decision to call for the presidential elections,

–  having regard to the Council conclusions of 13 November 2017 and 22 January 2018 on Venezuela, namely imposing an arms embargo and sanctions,

–  having regard to the declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU on the latest developments in Venezuela, of 26 January 2018, condemning the decision by the Venezuelan authorities to expel the Ambassador of Spain in Caracas,

–  having regard to its decision to award the 2017 Sakharov Prize to the Democratic Opposition in Venezuela,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the internationally non-recognised National Constituent Assembly has called for a presidential election to be hold by the end of April 2018; whereas, according to the Venezuelan Constitution, the body responsible for calling an election is the National Electoral Council;

B.  whereas this decision was taken outside the scope of national dialogue and regardless of any developments achieved in the meeting held between the Venezuelan Government and opposition in Santo Domingo;

C.  whereas on 25 January 2018 the Venezuelan Supreme Court decided to exclude the Mesa de la Unidad Democrática (MUD), a coalition of opposition parties, from the presidential elections, which represents a serious breach of the principle of equitable elections, prohibiting opposition candidates from competing freely and on equal terms in the elections;

D.  whereas such an unconstitutional call for an early election resulted in Mexico’s withdrawal from the process of national political negotiations between the Venezuelan Government and opposition;

E.  whereas on 13 November 2017 the Council of the EU decided to adopt an arms embargo against Venezuela and a ban on related material that might be used for internal repression;

F.  whereas on 22 January 2018 the Council of the EU decided, by unanimity, to impose sanctions against seven Venezuelan individuals holding official positions in the form of restrictive measures such as travel bans and asset freezes, in response to non-compliance with democratic principles, the rule of law and democracy;

G.  whereas, following the adoption of EU sanctions, Venezuela expelled and proclaimed as ‘persona non grata’ the Spanish Ambassador to Caracas, accusing Spain of interfering in its internal affairs; whereas the EU has firmly condemned this decision, while at the same pointing out its full solidarity with Spain, on the understanding that EU decisions in the area of foreign policy, including the imposition of sanctions, are unanimous;

H.  whereas the situation of human rights, democracy and rule of law in Venezuela continues to deteriorate; whereas Venezuela is facing an unprecedented political, social, economic and humanitarian crisis, resulting in many deaths;

I.  whereas a growing number of people in Venezuela, including children, are suffering from malnutrition as a consequence of limited access to quality health services, medicines and food; whereas, regrettably, the Venezuelan Government persists in refusing to receive and facilitate the distribution of international humanitarian aid;

J.  whereas the International Monetary Fund has projected that hyperinflation in Venezuela will soar to 13 000 % in 2018, up from an estimated 2 400 % in 2017, resulting in price increases of, on average, almost 1.5 percent each hour;

1.  Strongly rejects the decision by the internationally non-recognised National Constituent Assembly to call for early presidential elections by the end of April 2018; deeply deplores the Venezuelan Supreme Court’s recent decision to prohibit MUD representatives from competing in the upcoming elections; points out that many potential candidates will be unable able to run for elections because they are exiled, subject to administrative disqualifications, imprisoned or under house arrest;

2.  Insists that only elections based on a viable electoral calendar, agreed in the context of the national dialogue with all relevant actors and political parties, and respecting equal, fair and transparent conditions of participation – including the lifting of bans on political opponents, the freeing of political prisoner, the balanced composition of an impartial National Electoral Council and the existence of sufficient guarantees, including monitoring by independent international observers – will be recognised by the EU;

3.  States that under the current circumstances, the European Parliament will recognise neither the elections nor the authorities put in place by this illegitimate process;

4.  Strongly condemns the decision by the Venezuelan authorities to expel and declare as ‘persona non grata’’ the Spanish Ambassador to Caracas; recalls that all EU decisions in the area of foreign policy, including the imposition of sanctions, are taken by unanimity; considers, in this regard, that joint action could include, among other things, summoning Venezuela’s ambassadors to the Member States and the EU institutions; suggests that if the human rights situation continues to deteriorate, further action could be explored and adopted;

5.  Considers the imposition by the Council of the EU of the arms embargo, and the sanctions levied against seven Venezuelan officials to be appropriate measures in response to grave breaches of human rights and democracy, as appropriate measures, but calls for them to be extended against those mainly responsible for the increased political, social, economic and humanitarian crisis, namely President Nicolas Maduro and his inner circle, Vice President Tareck El Aissami, Minister of Defence Vladimir Padrino Lopez and the members of the high military command;

6.  Reiterates its full support of the National Assembly as the only legally constituted and recognised parliament in Venezuela, and calls on the Venezuelan Government to restore its full constitutional authority; rejects any decisions taken by the Constituent Assembly as being in breach of all democratic standards and rules;

7.  Condemns the extrajudicial killing of rebel police official Oscar Perez and six other individuals, who were executed despite the fact that they had already surrendered; strongly calls on the Venezuelan Government to provide for a transparent investigation of these murders;

8.  Fully supports the investigations of the International Criminal Court (ICC) into the extensive crimes and acts of repression perpetrated by the Venezuelan regime, and calls on the EU to play an active role in this regard;

9.  Calls on the Venezuelan authorities to allow unimpeded humanitarian aid into the country as a matter of urgency, and to grant access to international organisations wishing to assist the worst affected sectors of society; calls for the rapid implementation of a short-term response to counter malnutrition among the most vulnerable groups, such as children; expresses its solidarity with those Venezuelans forced to flee their country because of the lack of health services, medicines and food;

10.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the Government and National Assembly of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly and the Secretary-General of the Organisation of American States.


OJ C 285, 29.8.2017, p. 145.


OJ C 294, 12.8.2016, p. 21.


OJ C 316, 30.8.2016, p. 190.


Texts adopted, P8_TA(2016)0269.


Texts adopted, P8_TA(2017)0200.

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