Argentina’s El Perfil published an interview today with former attorney general Luisa Ortega Diaz in which she ratified her commitment to expose criminal activity by Maduro regime officials, and stated defiantly that “they will not stop” her from carrying out that endeavour to the end.
Ortega Diaz–who served as attorney general from 2007 until she was removed from her post in August for speaking out against the regime–escaped Venezuela on a speedboat on August 18 before she could be arrested by regime forces. Ortega Diaz claims to have brought with her evidence of illegal activities by regime officials, and has threatened since her escape to reveal it.
When asked by the newspaper what type of evidence she brought with her out of the country, Ortega Diaz said:
I have all of the files and evidence on the corruption investigations that we had opened at the Public Ministry. This is documentary evidence, testimony from witnesses, [and] expert [reports from] banks and financial institutions. [I have] everything that is needed for an impartial judge to sentence the guilty.
Ortega Diaz also revealed that she has already been collaborating with regional authorities by sharing the evidence that she brought from Venezuela. She explained:
I’ve handed over information regarding the links that Maduro, Diosado Cabello and others have to the Odebrecht case to the authorities from various countries. I have concrete date on operations, payouts, amounts, figureheads and assets that demonstrate the culpability of these individuals.
She also leveled harsh criticism at regime officials who have enriched themselves at the expense of the suffering of millions of Venezuelans, saying:
The people in power in Venezuela have made a businesses out of misery, hunger, and illness of our people. I have taken on this international crusade in order to unmask before the world the actions of this political group [the PSUV].
When asked by the newspaper if there were people within the ruling PSUV who were unhappy with Maduro’s disastrous term as president, Ortega Diaz said:
Of course there are people who are chavistas who do not agree with what is happening in Venezuela. The problem is that there is a lot of fear and persecution. The torture against individuals arrested for opposition Maduro has even claimed some lives.
Lima Group Asserts Willingness to Work Towards Solutions in Venezuela
The Lima Group–twelve nations who have jointly declared a desire to see democracy restored in Venezuela–issued a renewed call today for a peaceful solution to the crisis in the country, and suggested that any future dialogue efforts between the Maduro regime and opposition forces include assistance from the international community.
In a press release issued today from New York City, the group also re-iterated its support for the “democratically elected National Assembly”, which is controlled by the opposition, and to ignore any decision made by the Constituent Assembly, which was elected via fraud on July 30 and is made up of regime loyalists.
The Lima Group is made up by the following countries: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay and Peru.
National Assembly vice president Freddy Guevara reacted to the release from the Lima Group through his Twitter account, saying:
Thankful for the 17 [sic] countries who signed the Lima declaration and that have today ratified their position on Venezuela. The people support you!
North Korea Expresses Support for Maduro Regime at United Nations
North Korean Foreign Affairs Minister Ri Yong Ho spoke at the United Nations today on behalf of the what is arguably the world’s most repressive dictatorship, and voiced support for the Maduro regime and its outspoken stance against the United States.
Amid denunciation of the United States’ “barbaric and hateful” stance towards North Korea, Ho said:
We also express strong support and solidarity with the government and the people of Venezuela, who are fighting to defend national sovereignty and the socialist cause.
A Stalinist dictatorship built around the quasi-religious worship of its leaders, North Korea counts on few allies around the world given its well-documented and horrific human rights violations against political dissidents.
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