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ICC prosecutor says he will open Venezuela crimes against humanity case

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The International Criminal Court (ICC) is opening a full investigation into potential crimes against humanity in Venezuela.

The announcement was made by ICC prosecutor Karim Khan, Reuters reported

The announcement of the investigation came after a memorandum of understanding was signed between Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and Khan in which Madura’s government promised to cooperate with the probe. 

The memorandum said Venezuelan’s government objects to the investigation, saying the events in the country do not justify “the movement from the preliminary examination phase to a investigation phase.”

“We respect his decision as a state, though we have made clear we do not share it,” Maduro said. “We have signed an agreement that does guarantee, in an effective way, cooperation, positive complementarity, mutual support, constructive dialogue to seek truth and justice.”

The move to open the investigation comes after Venezuela and its opposition have both asked the ICC to investigate each other, Reuters noted. 

The formal opening of the investigation for crimes against humanity, by the International Criminal Court, vindicates the right to obtain justice that has been denied in Venezuela for the victims and their families,” opposition leader Juan Guaido celebrated in a tweet.

Millions of Venezuelans have fled the country due to food shortages and hyperinflation. The U.S. has accused the Venezuelan government and officials of corruption and accepting bribes at the expense of the country’s people. 

Tags Corruption in Venezuela ICC Nicolas Maduro Venezuela

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