Bishops call for eradication of mafias inside Venezuelan prisons
In a statement, the Prison Pastoral Delegation of Venezuelan Bishops' Conference (CEV) reminded Venezuelan authorities that the state is responsible for guaranteeing life, freedom, justice, equity, solidarity, and people's dignity, among other rights set out in the Constitution
The delegation also expressed its condolences to the relatives of the victims.
They also reminded penitentiary authorities that the Venezuelan State's commitment could not be other but to guarantee life, freedom, justice, equity, solidarity, defense and the development of individuals and their dignities, the construction of a fair, peace-loving society, among other noble purposes set forth in the Constitution.
In this regard, for the sake of inmates, they asked authorities "to make every possible effort to eradicate mafias inside prisons. Such mafias are turning prisons into businesses involving arms, drugs, kidnapping, among other crimes leading to horrible situations such as that of Uribana (...) we also invite you (the authorities) to undertake efforts toward positive projects aimed at recognizing the rights of all citizens and institutions. By doing this, it will be possible to overcome the penitentiary crisis lashing our country", the statement read.
As late as Tuesday, February 25, there was some visible response from Gabriela Ramírez's office. Representatives of the Office of the Ombudswoman would visit independent human rights watch groups to find what happened in connection with repression of protests. That day, they visited NGO Provea. The next day, they met with the attorneys of NGO Venezuelan Criminal Forum. They pursued specific data because -they argued- no claims of human rights violations of demonstrators had been filed with the Office of the Ombudswoman.