CARACAS, Monday January 23, 2012 | Update
Human Rights

HRW: Global community should oversee Venezuela's election campaign

"We are concerned about the progress of the upcoming presidential election," said in Washington José Miguel Vivanco, director of Human Rights Watch s Americas Division

Monday January 23, 2012  03:45 PM

The global community is strongly recommended to oversee the whole process of the election for president in Venezuela to ensure that in the event of voting results not favorable to the government of President Hugo Chávez, the "politicized" armed forces and the judiciary will be "forced" to accept the results, HRW said on Monday.

"We are concerned about the progress of the upcoming presidential election," said José Miguel Vivanco, director of Human Rights Watch's Americas Division during a press conference held in Washington to elaborate on the Latin American section of the NGO yearly report introduced in Cairo on the eve, DPA quoted.

Such a "worry," he explained, is due to the "level of politicization of the armed forces and the extent of intervention of the judiciary, which is not independent, but an appendix absolutely subordinated to the desires of President Chávez and his government," he regretted.

Therefore, HRW deems it "fundamental" for the international community to "keep a watchful eye over both the election itself and electioneering in order to, at least, give an alert and watch out in the event of any manipulation in this regard."

Ailing healthcare system seeking a cure

The news marked an ominous beginning, health-wise, of the year 2015: the Cardiovascular Surgery Unit at Hospital Clínico Universitario, one of the country's largest teaching hospitals, was to close completely on January 5 due to lack of medicines and surgical supplies. All patients who were waiting to be operated on were sent home. More than 10 patients waiting for surgery reportedly died there from lack of basic medical supplies in the two months prior to the closure.

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