Tag Archives: Venezuela

International Bar Association: IBA 2019: ‘Enthusiastic amateurs’ wanted to protect lawyers at risk

September 27, 2019

Simon Davis IBA

Commercial lawyers can do their bit as ‘enthusiastic amateurs’ to help protect colleagues at risk and the rule of law in general around the world, the president of the Law Society told the global legal profession today.

‘We need to ensure we are capturing the imagination and influence of the enthusiastic amateur,’ Davis told a packed closing session of the International Bar Association’s annual conference discussing ways to address the persecution of lawyers and judges.

By uniting in solidarity the profession can show that human rights lawyers are not just some isolated group to be picked off by hostile authorities, Davis said.

‘You can be a human rights lawyer in any organisation – we are all human rights lawyers,’ the Clifford Chance partner said.

The conference heard accounts of lawyers being threatened, imprisoned and murdered in countries as diverse as Turkey, Thailand and Venezuela. In the Philippines alone, 44 lawyers have been killed over the past three years, Erik Hammerstein, a commercial litigator who sites on the board of Netherlands group Lawyers for Lawyers said.

Noting this year’s furore over the granting of legal aid to a solicitor acting for a fugitive from justice, Davis said that the battle to protect the independence of the legal profession also had to be fought at home.





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International Bar Association/South Korea: Sessions on persecution of lawyers, Annual Conference, September 22-27, 2019

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Venezuela: Roberto Marrero’s family and lawyers await his hearing outside the Palace of Justice

March 27, 2019

A group of AN deputies gathered outside the Palace of Justice in Caracas, awaiting the audience of Roberto Marrero, head of the office of the president of the National Assembly, Juan Guaidó.

Next to them are Marrero’s lawyers and family members.

Marrero was arrested in the early hours of Thursday, during a raid on his home. Then he was accused by the National Government of being “the organizer” of a “terrorist” plan against Nicolás Maduro.

On Monday, Marrero’s lawyer, Joel Garcia, assured that Marrero’s transfer has not yet taken place, “After the imputation of three crimes they now speak of other crimes,” he said.

García also warned that the accusations made by Jorge Rodriguez on Saturday against Marrero and the captures of WhatsApp conversations shown do not appear in the files to which they had access. “I want to warn about Jorge Rodriguez’s words, about some captures, that there is nothing on the minutes of the files we had on Friday.

Reinaldo Marrero, Roberto Marrero’s brother, made an appeal from the place to the International Community to ask them to eliminate the charges that have been announced against them by members of the national government. “We are firm in our demand to release Roberto, who has nothing to do with the charges against him,” he said.







http://elpitazo.net/politica/tribunal-declara-privativa-de-libertad-contra-roberto-marrero-y-juan-planchart/ (ESPANOL)

https://www.infobae.com/america/venezuela/2019/03/29/la-justicia-chavista-dicto-privativa-de-libertad-para-roberto-marrero-el-jefe-de-despacho-de-juan-guaido/ (ESPANOL)

http://www.venezuelaaldia.com/2019/03/28/imen-dicta-privativa-de-libertad-contra-roberto-marrero/ (ESPANOL)

http://www.noticierodigital.com/2019/03/defensa-roberto-marrero-luis-paez-espera-la-decision-tribunales/ (ESPANOL)

https://samarew.com/venezuela-guaido-revoque-de-son-poste-de-president-du-parlement-et-declare-ineligible/ (FRANCAIS)

Venezuela: Venezuela Crisis Escalates as Guaidó’s Chief of Staff Is Arrested

March 21, 2019

The political crisis escalated significantly on Thursday when the chief of staff, Roberto Marrero, a lawyer and confidant of Mr. Guaidó, was taken from his apartment in southern Caracas around dawn to an unknown destination by armed intelligence officers, said Sergio Vergara, an opposition lawmaker who is a friend and neighbor of Mr. Marrero’s.










https://www.infobae.com/america/venezuela/2019/03/21/el-regimen-de-nicolas-maduro-detuvo-al-abogado-roberto-marrero-jefe-del-despacho-de-juan-guaido/ (ESPANOL)

https://elpais.com/internacional/2019/03/21/actualidad/1553163428_311380.html (ESPANOL)

https://cnnespanol.cnn.com/2019/03/21/las-reacciones-de-la-comunidad-internacional-a-la-detencion-de-roberto-marrero-director-de-despacho-de-guaido/ (ESPANOL)

https://www.lafm.com.co/internacional/union-europea-exige-liberacion-inmediata-de-diputado-venezolano-roberto-marrero (ESPANOL)

http://www.el-nacional.com/noticias/politica/informo-que-roberto-marrero-esta-siendo-trasladado-tribunales_275967 (ESPANOL)

http://www.el-nacional.com/noticias/politica/abogado-marrero-quedara-detenido-fin-semana_275973 (ESPANOL)

https://elpais.com/internacional/2019/03/08/america/1552057858_517896.html (ESPANOL)

https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2019/03/21/venezuela-le-chef-de-cabinet-de-juan-guaido-arrete-par-les-services-de-renseignement_5439443_3210.html  (FRANCAIS)

https://www.liberation.fr/planete/2019/03/21/venezuela-le-chef-de-cabinet-de-juan-guaido-arrete_1716557 (FRANCAIS)

Venezuela/AI: Stand with Geraldine Chacón (Petition)

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Geraldine started her peaceful campaigning when she was just 14 as a youth leader in Caracas.

Since then her activism has only grown – she started an Amnesty youth network and supported individuals who were at risk of imprisonment and persecution, and later joined the NGO Community Ambassadors Foundation running outreach programs with impoverished young people in Venezuela.

Now, Geraldine finds herself in need of the same help she has given many others. This year the Venezuelan authorities arrested her, and she spent four months in prison with limited access to sunlight, food and water.

Geraldine was released conditionally which means she cannot leave the country, and she risks being sent back to prison at any moment.

Sign this petition and demand the Venezuelan authorities drop the case against Geraldine. 

With enough global pressure, we could get the Venezuelan authorities to drop the charges – add your voice now.


http://writeathon.ca/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Venezuela.pdf (TAKE ACTION! AMNESTY WRITEEATHON)





NEW: Rule of law and human rights in Cuba and Venezuela and EU engagement


https://www.amnesty.org/es/latest/news/2018/11/amnesty-international-launches-worlds-biggest-human-rights-campaign/ (ESPANOL)

https://www.fidh.org/es/region/americas/venezuela/venezuela-liberacion-y-continuacion-de-la-criminalizacion-en-contra (ESPANOL)

https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geraldine_Chac%C3%B3n (ESPANOL)

https://www.amnesty.fr/liberte-d-expression/petitions/geraldine-chacon?fbclid=IwAR36BtoZtxwZocM8kX5mr3inRUrmmYWzIDlFziuGadF1T7i34RcCBfiZgVI (FRANCAIS)

https://www.amnesty.fr/presse/campagne-mondiale-10-jours-pour-signer-2018-i-amnesty (FRANCAIS)

https://www.ruhrnachrichten.de/Nachrichten/Schwerte/Schwerter-Amnesty-Gruppe-ruft-zur-Unterstuetzung-von-Menschenrechts-Aktivistinnen-auf-1351233.html (DEUTSCH)

https://www.ots.at/presseaussendung/OTS_20181129_OTS0026/briefmarathon-2018-seite-an-seite-mit-starken-frauen (DEUTSCH)

https://www.teckbote.de/startseite_artikel,-briefe-schreiben-fuer-die-freiheit-_arid,223387.html (DEUTSCH)

https://destadamersfoort.nl/deel-je-nieuws-artikel/amnesty-amersfoort-organiseert-write-rights-schrijfactie-520347 (NEDERLANDS)

http://www.committee.co.kr/38577 (KOREAN)

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October 9, 2018

Venezuelan opposition denies jailed politician took own life

The disputed jailhouse death of an opposition councilman arrested on allegations of plotting to kill President Nicolas Maduro has triggered alarm among many Venezuelans and swift condemnation from several foreign dignitaries.

Venezuela’s government said on Monday that Fernando Alban took his own life by leaping from the 10th floor of the state intelligence agency’s headquarters. But opposition leaders denied the official version and a few dozen of Alban’s supporters gathered outside the building yelling “Maduro killer!” contending that he had been murdered.

“There’s no doubt this was an assassination,” opposition leader Julio Borges said in a video from exile in neighboring Colombia, without providing evidence of his claim.

Alban, 56, was taken into custody Friday at Caracas’ international airport upon arriving from New York, according to his lawyer.



https://elpais.com/elpais/2018/10/09/album/1539079327_295511.html (ESPANOL)

http://aguasdigital.com/actualidad/leer.php?idnota=14735514&t=e (ESPANOL)

https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fernando_Alb%C3%A1n_Salazar (ESPANOL)

https://rr.sapo.pt/noticia/127228/suicidio-ou-tortura-ate-a-morte-advogado-relata-os-ultimos-dias-de-fernando-alban?fbclid=IwAR3a5Dh0jD9jw6Et35lpJqnLeBVVpFfo838j0YLxN9_dJOrLKGKw5JmhNrQ (PORTUGUES)

https://www.repubblica.it/esteri/2018/10/09/news/venezuela_oppositore_muore_in_carcere_caduto_dalla_finestra_-208563474/ (ITALIANO)

Venezuela: Maduro’s power grab can teach us how to defend against tyranny

May 24, 2018

Marco Rubio: It's time to hasten Maduro's exit from power

Without a hint of irony, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro tweeted, “Let the world know. Millions of people are voting freely … In Venezuela, it is the people who elect the president.”


The world, of course, already knows, as do the Venezuelan people, that the country long ago ceased to be a democracy. Maduro, no matter what he claims happened in Sunday’s election, is a dictator.
At a time when a global wave of authoritarianism is rising, a closer look at the Venezuelan tragedy reveals what was at the center of the power-grab: the dismantlement of the rule of law. It was this crucial tactic that turned one of Latin America’s most enduring democracies into a basket case of social and economic collapse.

Venezuela offers a case study in how by politicizing the law, the regime — incompetent in every other respect — managed to seize control of the country without the need to impose military rule.
It is no surprise that the World Justice Project ranks Venezuela dead last in its global Rule of Law Index.

Although the constitution guaranteed judicial independence, the Supreme Court, through its Judicial Commission, has the power to remove at will any of the “provisional” judges — more than half of the judges in Venezuela. According to the International Commission of Jurists, “the separation of powers is non-existent,” in Venezuela. The judiciary has become an instrument of the President and his party.



Venezuela: Calling for the Immediate Release of Detained Venezuelan Lawyers

May 17, 2018

Civil Rights Defenders calls for the immediate release of Venezuelan human rights lawyers Orlando Gonzalez and Oscar Rios of Foro Penal, detained yesterday, 16 May.

As reported by Rachel Sanchez, working as a coordinator at Foro Penal in Táchira state in western Venezuela, her two colleagues were detained at lunchtime by Fuerzas de Acciones Especiales, FAES, a special division of the Venezuelan National Police, supposedly responsible for combating organised crime. They have not been heard of since.

The fact that several human rights organisations in Venezuela accuse FAES for hundreds of extrajudicial killings the last couple of years, increases Civil Right Defenders’ preoccupation with the security of Orlando Gonzalez and Oscar Rios.


http://www.ntn24.com/america-latina/venezuela/abogados-del-foro-penal-fueron-detenidos-en-tachira-88528 (ESPANOL)

http://www.el-nacional.com/noticias/sucesos/detuvieron-dos-abogados-del-foro-penal-tachira_235491 (ESPANOL)

https://www.aporrea.org/ddhh/n325256.html (ESPANOL)


April 27, 2018

Image result for abogada geraldine chacon

Gregory Hinds and Geraldine Chacón have been arbitrarily detained in custody of the Bolivarian National Intelligence Service (SEBIN) in Caracas, Venezuela, since 31 January and 1 February, respectively. Both were issued a release warrant on 2 April, but the SEBIN refuses to comply with the warrant. They are prisoners of conscience who must be released immediately and unconditionally.

Venezuelan authorities brought Gregory Hinds, 32, to the Bolivarian National Intelligence Service (Servicio Bolivariano de Inteligencia Nacional, SEBIN) facilities for alleged interviews on 31 January. A few hours later, during the night of 1 February SEBIN officials picked up Geraldine Chacón, 24, at her home, and brought her to their facilities under the same argument. Despite there being no arrest warrants against them, both prisoners of conscience have been detained and held incommunicado ever since. Moreover, on 2 April, the competent court issued a release warrant on their names, but the SEBIN has not complied with it, and they both remain arbitrarily deprived of their liberty.

Officers at SEBIN facilities, both at administrative headquarters and at the detention centre, have stated that they do not have orders to comply with Gregory Hinds and Geraldine Chacón’s release warrants. SEBIN officers told relatives and lawyers of both prisoners of conscience that they were unaware of the location of their release warrant, or that the system has been down since early April.


http://accionlibertad.org/geraldine-chacon/ (ESPANOL)

https://www.amnistia.org/ve/blog/2018/04/5565/geraldine-chacon-debe-ser-liberada-inmediatamente (ESPANOL)

https://www.analitica.com/actualidad/tribunal-ordena-al-sebin-liberar-a-gregory-y-geraldine/ (ESPANOL)

http://efectococuyo.com/principales/geraldine-chacon-y-gregory-hinds-siguen-presos-en-el-sebin-pese-a-boletas-de-excarcelacion/ (ESPANOL)

International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute ANNUAL REVIEW 2017

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The International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) has launched its 2017 Annual Review, providing an overview of the IBAHRI’s major activities over the year.

2017 was a difficult year for human rights: since the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted 70 years ago, it appears that we are now reaching a point where the universal acceptance of human rights is being eroded. Increasingly polarised political spheres and growing support for populist governments are resulting in policies that scapegoat minorities, attack the under-represented and persecute those who oppose these governments.

In this atmosphere, protection of human rights, the rule of law and an independent legal profession are more important than ever. This makes the work of the IBAHRI more important than ever. Since its establishment in 1995, the IBAHRI has endeavoured to defend fundamental human rights through the promotion and protection of the independence of the legal profession, and by providing members of the global legal community with the tools needed to do the same.


As part of its ongoing projects in the Americas, the IBAHRI provided torture-prevention training to legal professionals, including judges and public defenders, across Brazil and Mexico. In El Salvador, the IBAHRI brought a high-level delegation of experts on the rights to justice, truth and historical memory to meet with legal professionals, the executive, armed forces, CSOs and academia with a view to achieving justice effectively and realising the rights of those who suffered human rights abuses as a result of the 12-year civil war. Additionally, the IBAHRI continued to monitor the emblematic trial of Venezuelan Judge María Lourdes Afiuni, and sent open letters to President Donald Trump of the United States, which criticised the President and his administration for actions the IBAHRI felt were ‘diametrically opposed to the defence of human rights’.

In Asia Pacific, the IBAHRI worked with the newly established Independent Lawyers’ Association of Myanmar to continue its work in the country, and has been running a trial observation programme to ensure those responsible for the death of prominent lawyer U Ko Ni are brought to justice. In Timor-Leste, the IBAHRI has consolidated its presence in the country by seeking to strengthen the legal profession and supporting the creation of its first national bar association.

The IBAHRI launched a mentorship programme for junior Azerbaijani lawyers that linked them with more experienced senior lawyers, and held a Law Student Conference in Baku, among other activities intended to advocate for the rights of legal professionals in the country. We also facilitated attendance at various OSCE Meetings for lawyers in GeorgiaKazakhstan and Tajikistan as part of the IBAHRI’s ongoing work in Europe and Central Asia.




In Tajikistan, reforms undertaken by the Qualifications Committee set up by the Ministry of Justice drastically decreased the number of practising lawyers.

Read more about the situation of Tajik lawyers and the work the IBAHRI has done in partnership with the Tajikistan Barristers’ Union here:https://tinyurl.com/y7rhftx4

(International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute Facebook, 9/5/18)