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Procedure : 2019/2543(RSP)
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Thursday, 31 January 2019 - Brussels
Situation in Venezuela

European Parliament resolution of 31 January 2019 on the situation in Venezuela (2019/2543(RSP))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its previous resolutions on Venezuela, in particular those of 3 May 2018 on the elections in Venezuela(1), of 5 July 2018 on the migration crisis and humanitarian situation in Venezuela and at its terrestrial borders with Colombia and Brazil(2) and of 25 October 2018 on the situation in Venezuela(3),

–  having regard to the declaration of 26 January 2019 by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (VP/HR) on behalf of the EU on the situation in Venezuela,

–  having regard to the declaration of 10 January 2019 by the VP/HR on behalf of the EU,

–  having regard to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC),

–  having regard to the Venezuelan Constitution, and in particular Article 233 thereof,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) and (4) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the elections held on 20 May 2018 were conducted without complying with the minimum international standards for a credible process and failed to respect political pluralism, democracy, transparency and the rule of law; whereas the EU, together with other regional organisations and democratic countries, recognised neither the elections nor the authorities put in place by this illegitimate process;

B.  whereas on 10 January 2019 Nicolás Maduro illegitimately usurped presidential power before the Supreme Court of Justice, in breach of the constitutional order;

C.  whereas on 23 January 2019 the legitimately and democratically elected President of the National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, was sworn in as the interim president of Venezuela, in accordance with Article 233 of the Venezuelan Constitution;

D.  whereas protests and massive demonstrations have taken place in Venezuela over the last few days; whereas dozens of deaths and several hundred people injured are being reported in the context of demonstrations and unrest; whereas casualties and serious human rights violations persist, resulting from acts of violence against and repression of social protests, illegal raids, arbitrary arrests, including of more than 70 minors, and stigmatisation and persecution of opposition activists; whereas new protests have been called for this past week;

E.  whereas the EU has repeatedly called for ‘the restoration of democracy and the rule of law in Venezuela through a credible political process’;

F.  whereas in 2017 the European Parliament awarded its Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought to the democratic opposition and political prisoners in Venezuela;

G.  whereas the Venezuelan population is facing an unprecedented social, economic and democratic crisis, with more than 3 million people having migrated and the inflation rate exceeding 1 650 000 %;

H.  whereas international and regional partners, including the EU, have committed to help to create conditions for a peaceful, credible and inclusive political process among all relevant Venezuelan actors; whereas the EU has reiterated its willingness to keep the channels of communication open;

I.  whereas Nicolás Maduro has publicly rejected the possibility of holding new presidential elections in response to the request by the VP/HR on behalf of the EU for the urgent holding of free, transparent and credible presidential elections;

1.  Recognises Mr Guaidó as the legitimate interim president of Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in accordance with the Venezuelan Constitution, as stated in Article 233 thereof, and expresses its full support for his roadmap;

2.  Requests that the VP/HR, together with the Member States, adopt a strong, unified stance, and recognise Juan Guaidó as the only legitimate interim president of the country until new free, transparent and credible presidential elections can be called in order to restore democracy; welcomes the fact that many democratic states have already recognised the new interim presidency;

3.  Calls for the EU and its Member States, if this decision is endorsed, to act in this regard and accredit those representatives to be appointed by the legitimate authorities;

4.  Strongly condemns the fierce repression and violence, resulting in killings and casualties; expresses its solidarity with the people of Venezuela and its sincere condolences to their families and friends; urges the de facto Venezuelan authorities to halt all human rights violations, to hold those responsible for them to account, and to ensure that all fundamental freedoms and human rights are fully respected;

5.  Condemns the detention of several journalists covering the situation in Venezuela and calls for their immediate release;

6.  Rejects any proposals or attempts to resolve the crisis that might entail the use of violence;

7.  Reiterates its full support to the National Assembly, which is the only legitimate democratic body of Venezuela and whose powers need to be restored and respected, including the prerogatives and safety of its members;

8.  Strongly supports the call by the UN Secretary-General for an independent and full investigation to be carried out into the perpetrated killings, in line with its previously adopted resolutions;

9.  Calls on the VP/HR to engage with the countries in the region and any other key actors with the aim of creating a contact group, as stated in the Council conclusions of 15 October 2018, which could mediate with a view to building an agreement on the calling of free, transparent and credible presidential elections based on an agreed calendar, equal conditions for all actors, transparency and international observation;

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 legitimate interim President of the Republic and National Assembly of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, the governments and parliaments of the Lima Group, the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly and the Secretary-General of the Organisation of American States.

(1) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2018)0199.
(2) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2018)0313.
(3) Texts adopted, P8_TA(2018)0436.

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