Lima Group Declaration February 04, 2019
The Governments of Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, members of the Lima Group, express the following:
- They reiterate their recognition and support for Juan Guaidó as the Interim President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela as per its Constitution. Salute the growing number of countries which have recognized interim President Guaidó and call upon the international community to give its strongest support to Interim President Guaidó and the National Assembly in their efforts to establish a government of democratic transition in Venezuela.
- Accept with great pleasure the request from interim President to incorporate the legitimate government of Venezuela in the Lima Group and welcome him amongst us.
- They agree to recognize and work with the representatives designated by the government of Interim President Juan Guaidó in their respective countries.
- They note that the attempts for dialogue initiated by various international actors have been manipulated by the Maduro regime, transforming them into delaying tactics in order for him to remain in power and, consequently, consider that any political or diplomatic initiative that is developed must aim to support the constitutional roadmap presented to the National Assembly and interim President Juan Guaidó, which seeks a peaceful transition for Venezuelans, will result in the exit of the dictatorial regime of Maduro, allow for holding of elections and the restoration of democracy in Venezuela.
- They call for the immediate re-establishment of democracy in Venezuela through the holding of free and fair elections called by the legitimate authorities, according to international standards as soon as possible. These elections should be conducted with sufficient guarantees, with the participation of all political leaders and with international observation, including the appointment of a new National Electoral Council.
- They condemn the persistent and serious violations of human rights in Venezuela. In this regard, they reject acts of violence and repression of popular demonstrations by the security forces which have caused many deaths, injuries and detentions.
- Urge the restoration of full freedom of the press, the end censorship and to the normalization of the functions of the media whose operations has been arbitrarily impeded by the Maduro regime.
- They reiterate the importance of effectively applying the Resolution of the United Nations Human Rights Council approved on September 27, 2018, “Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela”. They urge the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Human Rights to respond immediately to the serious human rights situation in the country.
- They express their deep concern for the situation of all political prisoners in Venezuela and demand their immediate release; further they demand guarantees for the physical safety of members of the National Assembly.
- They reiterate their deep concern about the serious humanitarian situation in Venezuela caused by the Maduro regime. They consider it imperative that access to humanitarian assistance be guaranteed in order to respond to the urgent needs of Venezuelans. They call upon the United Nations and its agencies and the international community to be prepared to provide humanitarian assistance to vulnerable populations in that country, whenever possible, and based on their needs.
- They call upon the National Armed Forces of Venezuela to demonstrate their loyalty to the Interim President in his constitutional functions as their Commander in Chief. Similarly, they urge the National Armed Forces not to impede the entry and transit of humanitarian assistance to Venezuelans.
- They reiterate their concerns regarding the migration caused by the political, economic and social crisis in Venezuela, and highlight its direct connection with the break of the constitutional order. Similarly, they recognize the efforts of host countries and underscore the need to support and strengthen their capacity for the humanitarian response by facilitating their access to the necessary resources.
- They take note of Resolution 1/2019 of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) that grants precautionary measures for Juan Guaidó and his family and demand their immediate implementation.
- They reject the steps taken by the Supreme Court of Justice, as controlled by the Maduro regime, to prohibit the travel of Juan Guaido and the freezing of his bank accounts and assets in Venezuela.
- They acknowledge the fundamental role of the legitimate Supreme Court of Justice has played in initiating support for the democratic transition.
- They call on members of the international community to take measures to prevent the Maduro regime from conducting financial and trade transactions abroad, from having access to Venezuela's international assets and from doing business in oil, gold and other assets.
- Finally, they reiterate their support for a process of peaceful transition through political and diplomatic means without the use of force.
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