CARACAS, Thursday October 23, 2008 | Update
European Parliament condemns Chávez for political rights abuses in Venezuela

The resolution was adopted by 51 votes to 1, during Strasbourg plenary session of the European Parliament

The EP also rejects the "arbitrary" expulsion of Human Right Watch director (Handout Photo / Miraflores Press Office)
Thursday October 23, 2008  01:21 PM


The European Parliament condemned on Thursday the government of President Hugo Chávez for the disqualification of nearly 300 Venezuelan opposition politicians and the expulsion of two senior officials of a human rights advocacy group, through a resolution adopted by the rightwing political parties.

The text, harshly questioned by the leftist parties and by Venezuela, was adopted by 51 votes to 1, during Strasbourg (an Eastern France city) plenary session of the European Parliament in the framework of "cases of violation of human rights, democracy and rule of law," AFP reported.  

With the exception of one member of the European Parliament, the Party of European Socialists (PES), the Green Party and the Group of the European United Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) decided not to participate in the vote as a boycott over what they consider a move that "scorns" the European Parliament. 

The resolution presented by the European People's Party (EPP, rightwing), the ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe) and the UEN (Union for Europe of the Nations) demands the Venezuelan government to review the disqualification of 272 politicians, most of them from Venezuelan opposition parties, which may not be candidates in Venezuela's regional elections next November.

The resolution rejects "categorically" the "arbitrary" expulsion of Human Rights Director, José Miguel Vivanco, and of the deputy director, Daniel Wilkinson, "for having issued a report criticizing Venezuela's actions against civil liberties and human rights during the 10-year tenure of President Hugo Chávez".

Turf wars over the mines

The El Perú police station, in El Callao municipality, south of Bolívar state, south Venezuela, came under sustained fire with more than 100 bullets smacking into its walls. According to police records, a gang of 15 gunmen identified as members of the so-called "mining unions" arrived on motorbikes in the evening of August 23 and began opening fire on the police station. They intended to get back a belt pack containing guns, bullets and memory storage devices. Estampas
Alianzas Estampas