Venezuela using death squads to kill young men

Venezuela GNB

Families of 20 men described how masked men dressed in black would arrive in black pickup trucks without license plates.

The report also focused on the country's worsening economic and humanitarian crisis, noting that "large sections of the population have no access to food distribution" as a result of its "progressive scarcity and unaffordability", with the country's monthly minimum wage equivalent to just a few dollars a month. They then broke into their houses, assaulted the women and girls and stole belongings.

Michelle Bachelet's appeal to the Government of Nicolas Maduro comes ahead of her address to the Human Rights Council on Friday and follows her official visit to Venezuela from 19 to 21 June.

President Nicolas Maduro's government says Venezuela is the victim of a USA plot to topple him, eradicate socialism and hand the world's largest oil reserves to multinationals.

On accusations of torture, it says that detainees have been subjected to "one or more forms of torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, including electric shocks, suffocation with plastic bags, water boarding, sexual violence. and exposure to extreme temperatures".

We also welcome the announcement that the Office of the High Commissioner will now have a presence in Venezuela to provide technical assistance and monitor the human rights situation.

Venezuela's President, Nicolas Maduro has had his leadership challenged by the leader of the country's national assembly, Juan Guaido who sees Maduro's tenure as president as illegitimate, following a botched election a year ago which many opposition parties boycotted.

A national guard hydrant truck sprays opponents to Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro during protests in Caracas, Venezuela.

Bachelet said "there are reasonable grounds to believe that grave violations of economic and social rights, including the rights to food and health, have been committed in Venezuela".

The US has played a major role in the Venezuelan crisis.

Finally, UNICEF estimates that approximately 3.2 million children are in urgent need of healthcare and nutritional assistance; we urge the Maduro regime to facilitate unimpeded access to, and the the entry of, worldwide humanitarian aid.

Ms Bachelet said in a statement that she had the Government's commitment to work with the United Nations to resolve some of the thorniest issues, including the use of torture and access to justice, and to allow full access to detention facilities.

Venezuela's government registered almost 5,300 killings during security operations past year linked to cases of "resistance to authority", the United Nations human-rights chief reported Thursday, denouncing a "shockingly high" number of extrajudicial killings.

Thursday's report charged that Venezuela's government over the past decade, and especially since 2016, had implemented a strategy "aimed at neutralising, repressing and criminalising political opponents and people critical of the government". "Essential institutions and the rule of law in Venezuela have been eroded", she said.

Bachelet then called upon "all those with the power and influence - within Venezuela and elsewhere - to work together, and to make the necessary compromises to resolve this all-consuming crisis".

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