UN Authority Figures

UN Human Rights Council: Venezuela

Police in camouflaged uniforms smashed into the office of Caracas Mayor Antonio Ledezma and carried the opposition leader away in a move heightening political tensions in the socialist-run South American country. Source: Fox News, February 20, 2015

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: 2016-2018

Venezuela's Record on human rights:
"Principal human rights abuses reported during the year included use of the judiciary to intimidate and selectively prosecute government critics; indiscriminate police action against civilians leading to widespread arbitrary detentions and unlawful deprivation of life; and government actions to impede freedom of expression and restrict freedom of the press. The government arrested and imprisoned opposition figures and did not respect judicial independence or permit judges to act according to the law without fear of retaliation. The government blocked media outlets, and harassed and intimidated privately owned television stations, other media outlets, and journalists throughout the year using threats, fines, property seizures, arrests, criminal investigations, and prosecutions. Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), the media, and government agencies reported extrajudicial killings by police and security forces; torture and other cruel, inhuman, 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; corruption and impunity in the police; arbitrary arrests and detentions; abuse of political prisoners; interference with privacy rights; lack of government respect for freedom of assembly; lack of protection for Colombian migrants; corruption at all levels of government; threats against domestic NGOs; violence against women; anti-Semitic statements by senior government officials; trafficking in persons; violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity; and restrictions on workers' right of association." (State Department's Country Report on Human Rights Practices 2015, Venezuela)