Venezuela: Statement of the International Contact Group *
1. The members of the International Contact Group (ICG) reiterate their concern about the situation in Venezuela and call on political actors and civil society to move urgently and in good faith towards the resolution of the profound political, economic and social crisis affecting the country and the entire region.
2. ICG members reiterate that the only way out of the crisis is to resume political negotiations and urgently establish an inclusive Venezuelan-led dialogue leading to credible, free and transparent elections in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and the laws of Venezuela.
3. ICG members support the renewed efforts for dialogue with a view to agreeing a solution to the crisis, and call on both parties to participate to the negotiating table constructively.
4. ICG members recall the need for unity of the opposition democratic forces. Difficult compromises and extensive cooperation will be required if Venezuela is to successfully transition towards democracy, stability and prosperity.
5. ICG members call on the government to guarantee all political and civil rights, the freedom and safety of all political actors, the release of all political prisoners, including those under house arrest, as well as the end of intimidation against political actors and civil society.
6. ICG members support the establishment of a permanent office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Venezuela.
7. In view of the forthcoming local and regional elections, ICG members urge further steps on electoral conditions, to comply with the democratic standards of free, fair and transparent elections.
8. The ICG calls on regional and international partners to adopt a common approach to the situation in Venezuela, in particular by supporting a negotiation process.
9. ICG members reiterate their deep concern about the worsening humanitarian situation in the country and neighbouring countries, compounded by the Covid-19 pandemic.
*The International Contact Group brings together Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, the European Union, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Panama, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and Uruguay in a common effort to support a peaceful and democratic way out of the crisis in Venezuela, as well as to facilitate access and the increase of humanitarian aid to that country, particularly in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic