Croatia is concerned about the latest developments in Venezuela and the further deepening of the political, economic and humanitarian crisis. We strongly condemn the violations of human rights and the rule of law as well as the violence which resulted in deaths and injuries of citizens and numerous arrests.
We underscore the importance of finding a peaceful and democratic solution as part of a viable political process which should include the holding of free, transparent and credible presidential elections in line with international democratic standards and Venezuela’s Constitution.
Croatia supports the democratically elected legitimate bodies of Venezuela, the National Assembly and its president, in his capacity as interim president, in holding free, fair and democratic presidential elections and ensuring the legitimacy of institutions. In that regard, Croatia has joined other EU member states in a joint statement (see below).
As part of the efforts to overcome the current crisis peacefully, Croatia supported the establishment of an International Contact Group on Venezuela, which should help create conditions for a credible political process and the holding of elections.
Croatia supports the citizens of Venezuela in their wishes for the cessation of violence and a peaceful and democratic resolution of the crisis. We are working with our partners in the EU on providing humanitarian aid which, due to a regime ban, cannot be delivered. In this respect, Croatia is especially concerned about the large Croat community living in Venezuela.
JOINT DECLARATION ON VENEZUELA
On January 26th, various Member States urged Mr. Nicolás Maduro to take the necessary legal steps for democratic presidential elections to be announced within 8 days. On that same day, the EU High Representative / Vice President issued a statement on behalf of the 28 EU Member States, also calling for the urgent holding of free, transparent and credible presidential elections and indicating that, in the absence of an announcement on the organization of fresh elections with the necessary guarantees over the next days, the EU would take further actions, including on the issue of recognition of the country´s leadership, in line with article 233 of the Venezuelan constitution.
Croatia along with Spain, Portugal, Germany, the United Kingdom, Denmark, the Netherlands, France, Hungary, Austria, Finland, Belgium, Luxemburg, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, and Sweden takes note that Mr. Nicolás Maduro has chosen not to set in motion the electoral process. Subsequently, and in accordance with the provisions of the Venezuelan Constitution, they acknowledge and support Mr. Juan Guaidó, President of the democratically elected National Assembly, as President ad interim of Venezuela, in order for him to call for free, fair and democratic presidential elections.