IACHR grants precautionary measures in favor of Ovidio Jesús Poggioli Pérez in Venezuela

May 14, 2021

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Washington D.C. - The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued Resolution 41/21 on May 13, 2021, whereby it granted precautionary measures to Ovidio Jesús Poggioli Pérez, in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, after considering that he is in a serious and urgent situation presenting a risk of irreparable harm to his rights.

According to the request, the proposed beneficiary was deprived of liberty by state agents on April 26, 2021. He was reportedly accused of treason to the country and of instigating others to revolt. Therefore, a judge from a military court ordered his deprivation of liberty at the headquarters of the General Directorate of Military Counterintelligence (DGECIM). However, due to lack of space, on April 29, he was transferred to the National Center for Prosecuted Military Members (CENAPROMIL). Subsequently, the proposed beneficiary's relatives and friends went to both detention centers and were informed that he was not housed in either facility, nor in the custody of the Prosecutor's Office or the judge that presided the case. Therefore, his whereabouts are currently unknown according to the applicants.

The IACHR regrets the lack of observations from the State, despite having requested them in accordance with Article 25.5 of the Rules of Procedure, and XIII of the Inter-American Convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons.

Upon reviewing the information provided in light of the current context of Venezuela and the provisions of the Inter-American Convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons, and considering the State's unique position as guarantor of the persons in its custody, the IACHR finds that the beneficiary, Ovidio Jesús Poggioli Pérez, is at serious risk, since his whereabouts or fate is unknown, and there is no information about his current conditions.

Consequently, the IACHR requested that the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela adopt the necessary measures to protect the rights to life and personal integrity of Poggioli Pérez. In particular, the State is called on to report whether the beneficiary is in the custody of state authorities and, if so, the circumstances of his deprivation of liberty, or otherwise, adopt the measures aimed at determining his whereabouts or fate. The State was also requested to implement the actions aimed at investigating the events that led to the granting of this precautionary measure, so as to prevent them from reoccurring.

The granting of this precautionary measure and its adoption by the State does not constitute the prejudgment of any petition that may eventually be presented before the inter-American system alleging violations of the rights protected in the American Convention and other applicable instruments.

The IACHR is a principal and autonomous body of the Organization of American States (OAS), whose mandate derives from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights. The Inter-American Commission has a mandate to promote the observance and defense of human rights in the region and acts as a consultative body to the OAS in this area. The IACHR is composed of seven independent members who are elected by the OAS General Assembly in their personal capacity, and do not represent their countries of origin or residence.

No. 123/21