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In response to reports that at least a dozen people were killed in the context of the protests in Venezuela, Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International, said:

“Since the beginning of the week, thousands of people in Venezuela have taken to the streets to protest the serious institutional and human rights crisis that has gripped the country. Instead of seeking solutions and engaging in dialogue to address their demands, the authorities under the command of Nicolás Maduro have responded by sending military and police officials onto the streets to apply their policy of repression.”

“Amnesty International has received complaints of the participation of the Bolivarian National Police’s infamous Special Actions Force, which has already been accused on other occasions of abusive and excessive use of intentionally lethal force and which has no role in controlling demonstrations. This puts the lives and physical integrity of the people who protest at serious risk. There have also been very serious complaints of the participation of pro-government armed groups attempting to prevent protests in various parts of the country.”

“Protesting cannot be synonymous with death in Venezuela. Using bullets in an attempt to silence those who make legitimate demands for their human rights further reduces the chances of a peaceful resolution to the serious institutional and human rights crisis that the country has faced in recent years.”

“In these moments of high tension and social conflict in Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro and other members of his government must stop the repression of the people, and above all guarantee the life and physical integrity of those who demonstrate against them.”

Read more:

Venezuela: Authorities must stop criminalizing and killing young people living in poverty (News, 20 September 2018)

‘This is no way to live’: Public security and the right to life in Venezuela (Research, 20 September 2018)

Venezuela: Regional governments must provide protection for people fleeing the country (News, 3 September 2018)

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