ESPACIO PUBLICITARIO
CARACAS, Monday July 08, 2013 | Update
 
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Criminalization of right to protest rejected in Venezuela

The Venezuelan Program of Education-Action in Human Rights (Provea) informs about anti-protests laws

Marino Alvarado, Provea’s coordinator (File photo)
YANETH FERNÁNDEZ |  EL UNIVERSAL
Monday July 08, 2013  10:31 AM
Criminalization of labor protests by some pro-government sectors has been one of the main issues subject to discussion among trade unions and non-governmental organizations, which fear escalation.

For eight years, protests have been shifted from being a right to an offense via statutory law, the Venezuelan Program of Education-Action in Human Rights (Provea) contends.

Provea's Coordinator Mariano Alvarado says there are at least eight laws providing sanctions for workers calling or participating in a strike.

Nevertheless, the Bolivarian Workers' Union of Venezuela argues that not all labor conflicts are legal. Its president, Wills Rangel, has pointed out that a large number of claims are politically driven. He explained that requests for salary adjustment of 150% show, for instance, unwillingness to negotiate.

Translated by Jhean Cabrera
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Is protest over?

That political protest in Venezuela has lost momentum seems pretty obvious: people are no longer building barricades to block off streets near Plaza Francia in Altamira (eastern Caracas), an anti-government stronghold; no new images have been shown of brave and dashing protesters with bandanna-covered faces clashing with the National Guard in San Cristóbal, in the western state of Táchira; and those who dreamed of a horde of "Gochos" (Tachirans) descending  in an avalanche to stir up revolt in Caracas have been left with no option but to wake up to reality.

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