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UN Authority Figures

UN Human Rights Council: Venezuela

Photo: Everyday, 53 Venezuelans will not return home or will be murdered in their own places. A son grieves for his father, who was killed in a street of the neighborhood. Their stories seem to be quite accepted as unstoppable events (Handout File: Fernando Sánchez)

Mission of the Human Rights Council:
"The General Assembly...2. Decides that the Council shall be responsible for promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind and in a fair and equal manner; 3. Decides also that the Council should address situations of violations of human rights, including gross and systematic violations, and make recommendations thereon..." (Resolution 60/251)

Venezuela's Term of office: January 1, 2013 - December 31, 2015

Venezuela's Record on human rights:
"Security forces committed human rights abuses. The principal human rights abuses reported during the year included corruption, politicization of the judicial system, and government actions to impede freedom of expression and restrict freedom of the press. The government did not respect judicial independence or permit judges to act according to the law without fear of retaliation. The government used the judiciary to intimidate and selectively prosecute political, union, business, and civil society leaders who were critical of government policies or actions. The government harassed and intimidated privately owned television stations, other media outlets, and journalists throughout the year, using threats, fines, property seizures, targeted regulations, arrests, and criminal investigations and prosecutions. In addition, the following human rights problems were reported by NGOs, the media, and in some cases the government itself: unlawful killings, including summary killings by police elements; torture and other cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment; harsh and life-threatening prison conditions and lack of due process rights that contributed to widespread violence, riots, injuries, and deaths in prisons; inadequate juvenile detention centers; arbitrary arrests and detentions; corruption and impunity in police forces; political prisoners; interference with privacy rights; corruption at all levels of government; threats against domestic NGOs; violence against women; anti-Semitism in the official media; trafficking in persons; violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity..." (State Department's Country Report on Human Rights Practices 2013, Venezuela)