Venezuela’s president and top ministers are responsible for probable crimes against humanity, UN investigators said on Wednesday, a report the country’s government quickly labelled as “riddled with falsehoods.”
In their first report, the team tasked with probing a slew of alleged violations said they had found evidence that state actors, including President Nicolas Maduro, were behind serious crimes such as extrajudicial killings and the systematic use of torture.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza pushed back on Twitter, criticizing the report for being “drawn up remotely without methodological rigour” and “controlled by governments that are submissive to Washington.”
He said the document, which was created by an International Fact-Finding Mission initiated by the UN Human Rights Council a year ago, was “riddled with falsehoods.”
Mission chairperson Marta Valinas said the report “found reasonable grounds to believe that Venezuelan authorities and security forces have since 2014 planned and executed serious human rights violations.”
The investigators called for Venezuela to dismantle its Special Action Forces (FAES), which along with SEBIN was responsible for well over half of the killings.