Deputy Ángel Rodríguez, chair of the Energy and
Mines Committee, Venezuelan National Assembly, rebutted as
illegal the rulings by US and British courts to freeze the
assets of Venezuelan oil giant Pdvsa in the US, the United
Kingdom, the Netherlands and the Netherlands Antilles, as
part of a complaint filed by US oil major Exxon Mobil after
its assets in heavy-crude oil Orinoco belt were seized by
the Venezuelan government last May.
The nationalization process, under which foreign firms were forced to enter into joint ventures where the Venezuelan State holds a majority stake, "comes as part of an exercise of full oil sovereignty in Venezuelan territory. Any dispute or lawsuit should be addressed under the jurisdiction of domestic courts only. Therefore, the National Assembly forcefully rejects the pretensions of the oil multinational to bias the international arbitration -which is a colonialist practice that prevailed in the oil opening agreements initialed in the 90's and which runs counter to the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela."
In Rodríguez's view, the court orders are intended to have an influence on Venezuela's allocations of oil areas, as the Bolivarian government has set principles to diversify partners in hydrocarbons operations and privilege policies favoring Latin American and Caribbean union.
He ratified that Venezuela is free to award future areas in the Orinoco oil belt, which holds the world's largest liquid hydrocarbons reserve.
LOPEZ CASE HRW endorsed the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights' call on Venezuela to release Leopoldo López.
LOPEZ CASE Without giving many details, Venezuelan Congress' Speaker Diosdado Cabello has claimed he saved opposition leader Leopoldo López's life, adding that there were no negotiations whatsoever days before the dissenter turned himself in to the Bolivarian National Guard earlier this year. "He (López) knew it (information about his possible assassination), too. Why did he turn himself in? He and his family were aware of that," said the legislator in an interview with daily newspaper El Universal.
HUMAN RIGHTS The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, expressed serious concern on Monday at the continued detention of Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López, as well as more than 69 other people who were arrested in the context of public protests that took place across Venezuela over several months starting in February this year.