Two days before the arrival of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to Venezuela, the National Assembly held a first reading of a draft law that, if passed, would criminalise the work of defenders, further shrinking the space they have to operate. States must speak up for human rights defenders and against this initiative!
In addition, the organisations published a press statement and said that, with the renewal of the FFM’s mandate, they will seek to follow up and implement the recommendations that are still pending, including reforming the judicial system and guaranteeing access to impartial justice.
“The failure of the Venezuelan authorities to implement the Mission’s recommendations and the structural conditions that prompted the creation of the Mission remain, including impunity, lack of domestic avenues for redress for victims of abuses, and the government’s continued attempts to evade international scrutiny”, the groups said in the statement.
Moreover, the organisations highlighted the links between the Fact-Finding Mission and other UN mechanisms as well as the FFM’s complementarity with the office of the High Commissioner and with other international instruments.
The groups’ joint statement also urged governments, especially in Latin America, to take the lead in the efforts to renew the Mission’s mandate. “Latin American governments should again lead this initiative to promote accountability measures and ongoing monitoring efforts, in addition to urging all UN Member States to renew the mandate”, the statement read.
ISHR supports this joint statement and calls on States to ensure that, at its next session in September, the Human Rights Council renews the mandate of the Fact-Finding Mission.