The legacy of Venezuelan presidential human rights abuses is forgotten in the midst of oil shortages

As sanctions against Russia have been tightened in recent weeks and U.S. oil services companies have systematically withdrawn from Eurasian countries, authorities have turned to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s authoritarian regime in hopes of a solution. rice field.

Since Russia launched a major military invasion of Ukraine on February 24, crude oil has suffered market instability and inflation, reaching historic highs of over $ 130 per barrel.

Some experts argue that this trend may continue or worsen.

A high-ranking US delegation, including six Citgo oil executives, met with Maduro on March 5, causing a backlash from US representatives and the general public.

Still a week later, on March 12, the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security, Josep Borrell Fontes, met with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Felix Prasencia to discuss his “commitment” to the Charter of the United Nations. ..

In addition, Placencia advocated the removal of sanctions on the Maduro administration.

Now that we’ve talked about alternative oil resources, some have pointed out the great potential of Venezuela. South American countries have the largest proven oil reserves in the world. 304 billion barrel.

By comparison, Saudi Arabia has 298 billion barrels and the United States has 69 billion barrels, making it the world’s leading producer of fossil fuels.

Epoch Times Photo
State-owned Petroleus de Venezuela oil refinery plant in Puerto La Cruz, Anzoategui, Venezuela, November 4, 2021. (YuriCortez / AFP via Getty Images)

Aside from the global shortage, the deal with Marudo undermines why the United States has ceased relations with Venezuela: avalanches of human rights accusations, criminal activity, and stolen presidential elections.

“There are structural reasons why Venezuelan democracy is not stable under Maduro.

“The first reason is that it is not democracy that exists in Venezuela today … it is a dictatorship supported by a one-party system and by foreign occupation. In order for Venezuela to be free, This power structure must work, “analyst Dr. Orlando Gutierrez Boronato told the era.

Since taking power in 2013, Maduro has presided over the worst. Economic crisis In the history of the country.

Only three years after the death of controversial former President Hugo Chavez, 30 percent of Venezuela’s gross domestic product was lost.

In addition to severe food and drug shortages, excessive levels of disastrous poverty and hyperinflation continued.

This combination of catastrophic factors led to an increasingly authoritarian government under Maduro. And it is still struggling to maintain a national grasp in protests and political opposition. He repeatedly extinguished both with deadly power.

After the UN fact-finding mission human rights Abuse in Venezuela, investigators have found evidence of illegal executions, enforced disappearances, arbitrary detention, and torture since 2014.

Also in December 2019 Official reportCarrie Filipetti, a former Assistant Secretary of State for the Western Hemisphere, said Venezuela’s booming illegal mining industry “perpetuates a horrifying cycle of crime and both human and ecosystem abuse.”

She added that while the “Maduro dictatorship” is aware of the threat posed by illegal mining to indigenous peoples, the disputed head of state has not taken steps to address the concerns.

Instead, Maduro uses it and uses mining operations as an umbrella for guns, cash, and control for loyalty to the government, she says.

Allegations of unarmed protesters beaten and killed by state security officials have continued to undermine Maduro’s international reputation since 2014.

Venezuelan protest
Venezuelans protest the Nicolas Maduro administration in Caracas, Venezuela on May 4, 2019. (Eva Marie Uzkategi / Getty Images)

“The killing of hundreds of civilians protesting democracy and freedom, the imprisonment of civilians against their thinking, and the surrender of Venezuelan infrastructure and wealth to foreign occupiers are serious and enormous human rights violations,” says Boronato. I did.

In the 2018 presidential election, Maduro won his second six-year term. But his political rivals, US officials, some humanitarian organizations, and many Venezuelans claim that the election is nothing more than a show in favor of a ruthless dictator.

The disputed elections were the driving force behind the tightening of US sanctions on authoritarian regimes.

In 2019, former President Donald Trump will target state-owned Venezuelan oil company PDVSA, its own real estate, and American companies operating in the country to further isolate the country economically. did.

Partners like Chevron were allowed to maintain significant operations, but production should be phased out by June 2022.

In addition, the US Treasury began sanctioning people involved in Venezuela’s oil exports, production, or sales in 2019.

US sanctions on Caracas began in 2005 when former President George W. Bush ruled that the Chavez administration did not support the obligations of a global drug trafficking agreement.

The existing misery in the population was exacerbated by the arrival of the 2020 pandemic.

The Maduro administration seized the opportunity to punish opponents for breaking COVID-19-related restrictions and used a state of emergency to expand population control.

In addition, many families lacked adequate nutrition, safe water, and access to medical facilities. This states that the Human Rights Watch organization is a crime against humanity.

Maduro, a strong long-time supporter of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has openly supported the attack of authoritarian leaders on Ukraine, even claiming that Western nations have caused conflict.

“It is the responsibility to escalate this dispute that has caused this dispute by decades of non-compliance with the agreement, decades of threat to Russia, and decades of preparation for NATO’s extension plan. “The first people to bear,” said Maduro. March 7th speech.

Autumn Spredemann


Autumn is a South American-based reporter who focuses primarily on Latin American issues in the Epoch Times.