CARACAS, Saturday August 07, 2010 | Update
Western Hemisphere | The Venezuelan State was sued before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR)
Complaint filed against Hugo Chávez at the International Criminal Court

Failure to obtain positive results in talks would have forced the government of Álvaro Uribe, who is handing power on August 7 to president-elect Juan Manuel Santos, to officially file a complaint against Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez at the ICC

Saturday August 07, 2010  09:15 AM

Jaime Granados, the lawyer of Colombian outgoing president Álvaro Uribe, on August 6 filed a complaint against Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez at the International Criminal Court (ICC) and a lawsuit against the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).

Speaking to radio station RCN, Granados, who acts as the legal representative of Uribe, said the complaint and the lawsuit before the two international bodies came in response to human rights violations by Chávez, as an individual, and Venezuela, as a State, Efe reported.

"Indeed, today (August 6) I forwarded to the headquarters of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, to the office of Luis Moreno Ocampo, the court's prosecutor, the relevant complaint, and we expect he to take action," said Granados.

He added that he also sent "to Washington, to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), a lawsuit for purposes of achieving remedy in connection with serious human rights situations " involving Venezuela.

This is a "complaint against the Head of State, Hugo Chávez, as a natural person, at the ICC, based on the Treaty of Rome, and the other one is a lawsuit filed with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights against the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela," Granados explained.

Granados said that such human rights violations also have to do with the alleged presence of guerrillas of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) in Venezuelan territory.

Both the lawsuit and the complaint are reportedly related to the fact that guerrillas are preparing terrorist acts while on Venezuelan soil for implementation in Colombia against people.

Uribe's move came only hours before handing over power to president-elect Juan Manuel Santos. The decision threatens to stir further tensions with Chávez's government, which broke diplomatic ties on 22 July after Colombia reported at the Organization of American States (OAS) the presence of guerrillas in Venezuela.

Despite the rupture, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Nicolás Maduro on August 6 was scheduled to attend Santos' inauguration on August 7.

Maduro's attendance heralded a step forward to leave behind a crisis that broke out between the two neighboring countries. However, the lawsuit and complaint filed on August 6 by Uribe's lawyer could undermine the process.

Upon their arrival in Bogotá, most Latin American rulers invited to the inauguration ceremony of Santos made vows for a solution to the crisis, which affects the entire region.

Under Uribe, Ecuador also broke relations with Colombia after the Colombian Army attacked a FARC camp in Ecuador.

Non-stop extraction of mineral riches

Oil and gas; gold and diamonds; coltan, coal, iron, bauxite, copper: the Venezuelan economy is extractive, as it relies on taking mineral substances from the earth for sale or trade.

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