Thank you for contacting me regarding the current crisis in Venezuela. I appreciate hearing from you and am grateful for the opportunity to respond.
Protests against Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro began in February 2014 stemming from record high inflation and basic food shortages. After nearly a month of protests, 20 people have been killed and several dozen have been arrested, including leading opposition leader, Leopoldo Lopez. The clashes between protestors and government security forces continue to be violent, and have prompted the U.N. Human Rights Council to demand answers about allegations of torture by security forces. This has been the largest protest in Venezuela in over a decade.
On March 12, 2014, the Senate unanimously passed S.Res.365, which supports “the right of the Venezuelan people to the free and peaceful exercise of representative democracy.” Importantly, it urges an end to these violent clashes in favor of peaceful protests to support democracy. It also urges the President to impose targeted sanctions against individuals who perpetrate human rights violations against peaceful demonstrators, journalists, and other members of civil society in Venezuela. Finally, it calls for the United States to work with other countries in the hemisphere to encourage dialogue between the government of Venezuela and the political opposition through the Organization of American States.
The United States is founded on a free society where life, liberty and certain inalienable rights are guaranteed. I believe we should support peaceful democratic movements throughout the world. I will continue to closely monitor the events in Venezuela as they unfold and remember your concerns regarding the escalating crisis.
Thank you again for contacting me. Please visit my webpage at http://isakson.senate.gov/ for more information on the issues important to you and to sign up for my e-newsletter.
United States Senator
This letter was the answer to a letter previously written by a Venezuelan living in the United States. You can contribute too!