UN slams ‘systematic use of excessive force’ in Venezuela

Peace and Freedom

AFP

© AFP/File | Venezuela has experienced four months of street demonstrations against President Nicolas Maduro that have left 125 people dead

GENEVA (AFP) – The UN decried Tuesday “widespread and systematic use of excessive force” against demonstrators in Venezuela, saying security forces and pro-government groups were responsible for at least 73 protester deaths.

Presenting the preliminary findings from an investigation conducted in June and July, the UN rights office described “a picture of widespread and systematic use of excessive force and arbitrary detentions against demonstrators in Venezuela.”

“Witness accounts suggest that security forces, mainly the National Guard, the National Police and local police forces, have systematically used disproportionate force to instil fear, crush dissent, and to prevent demonstrators from assembling, rallying and reaching public institutions to present petitions,” the rights office said in a statement.

“Government authorities have rarely condemned such incidents,” it stressed.

Venezuela, which is suffering from an…

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