The purpose of this letter is to persuade the Government of Canada and all the Members of Parliament to reverse its counterproductive policy towards Venezuela, on the grounds that it contravenes international laws, is unethical, undemocratic and is against the interest of the vast majority of Venezuelans.
The Canadian Government prides itself in its respect for the rule of law. It is therefore disturbing that this has not included the respect for international law, which is the only thing capable of preventing war among nations, any erosion of which is a threat against peace.
Canada has become leader of the ad-hoc Lima Group, a group that only came together after the OAS failed to achieve the majority vote necessary to support overthrowing Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro whose legitimate government is recognized by the United Nations, the Organization of American States, all the Non-aligned Countries, all Caribbean States under CARICOM, the African Union, Russia, China, and India. Innumerable social organizations and unions throughout the world support the legitimate government of President Maduro including the Canadian Labour Congress and CUPE.
This Lima Group declared its support for an individual who proclaimed himself president of Venezuela in a public plaza, without the benefit of any presidential election and in violation of the Constitution and electoral laws of Venezuela.
Canada has abandoned its longstanding policy of “constructive engagement” and adhered itself to the United States’ economic sanctions against Venezuela, sanctions imposed with the explicit declared purpose of bringing about regime change in Venezuela, and were accompanied by the statement that “the United States will continue to take concrete and forceful action”. These sanctions were not imposed by the UN Security Council and therefore violate international law. The sanctions also violate the U.N.’s Charter, the OAS’ Charter and resolutions of the International Court of Justice.
The UN Charter in its Article 2 states:
“All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state.”
The UN Charter rests on the philosophy of multilateralism, a commitment to international cooperation and the sovereign equality of States. The principle of non-intervention and non-interference in the internal affairs of sovereign states have been reaffirmed in the UN General Assembly notably in Resolutions 2625 (XXV) and 3314 (XXIX).