Venezuela seeks to resume ICC investigation into killings

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Venezuela has asked the International Criminal Court to refer to the authorities of the Latin American nation its investigation into the allegations of torture and extrajudicial executions committed by the security forces during the regime of President Nicolás Maduro.

If the judges grant the request, it would end the world court’s first investigation into crimes committed in a Latin American country and allow law enforcement to investigate. However, ICC prosecutor Karim Khan indicated on Thursday that he wanted to continue with the investigation he announced in November and said he would soon ask judges to approve the continuation of his investigation.

Khan said Venezuelan authorities have provided no new reasoning to support their request to resume the investigation.

In 2019, a report on human rights mentioned“In the midst of an economic and humanitarian crisis that is hitting the poor hardest, Venezuelan authorities are resorting to gross abuses in low-income communities that no longer support the Maduro regime,” according to Jose Miguel Vivancodirector of the Americas at Human Rights Watch.

Human Rights Watch said government repression in Venezuela has resulted in thousands of arbitrary arrests, prosecution of hundreds of civilians in military courts, torture and abuse of detainees, extrajudicial executions as well as short-term enforced disappearances.

According to Human Rights Watch, more than 5.4 million Venezuelans, or about 20% of the country’s population, have fled in recent years. Of that amount, 323,000 Venezuelans will be eligible for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the United States, according to the US Citizen and Immigration Service.

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