Yesterday the International Contact Group (ICG) on Venezuela held a Senior Officials Meeting by video conference to discuss the situation in Venezuela following the regional and local elections held on the 21 November 2021 and the latest developments in the process to hold a referendum for a presidential recall. The Group also discussed the preliminary findings of the EU Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) on these elections.
The International Contact Group welcomes the work of the EU EOM and is confident of its contribution towards a peaceful and democratic solution to the Venezuelan crisis and that its recommendations for possible reforms can help to improve future electoral processes.
The Group considers a comprehensive reform of the judiciary an opportunity to strengthen the level-playing field and the fairness of future elections.
The International Contact Group reiterates that the only way out of the ongoing crisis in Venezuela is through a Venezuelan-led political negotiation leading to credible, inclusive and transparent elections at all levels, including at the presidential level.
The International Contact Group urges all parties of the Venezuelan-led comprehensive negotiations to resume the dialogue in Mexico and act in good faith for the benefit of the Venezuelan people.
The ICG Senior Officials expressed concerns about the political climate and call for full respect for political rights and physical integrity of all political and civil actors, including journalists.
The Group also discussed the serious humanitarian situation in Venezuela and reiterated their commitment to continue providing emergency assistance to vulnerable Venezuelans as well as to improve the operating conditions and access for humanitarian organisations and actors, including through the work of the ICG’s Humanitarian Assistance Working Group. In this context, the Group calls on the Venezuelan authorities to facilitate access of the ICG Humanitarian Assistance Working Group to the country.
This statement has been agreed by the following ICG members: Chile, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, the European Union, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Panama, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Uruguay.