The tweet from the Attorney General of Venezuela Tarek William Saab came Monday evening, February 12: Rocio San Miguel is accused of “betrayal of the homeland, conspiracy, terrorism and criminal conspiracy, among others”. Human rights activist and specialist in military issues, Mme San Miguel was arrested at dawn on Friday, February 9, at Simon Bolivar airport in Caracas, as she was preparing to take a plane to Miami with her daughter Miranda Diaz. The prosecutor specifies that he will ask the Caracas anti-terrorism court to place Mme San Miguel on remand. “This completely disproportionate affair is unexpected,” reacted Juan Gonzalez, one of M’s lawyersme San Miguel upon reading the prosecutor’s message.
A lawyer by training, founder and president of the organization Control Ciudadano (“citizen control”), Rocio San Miguel, 57, is a recognized figure in Venezuelan civil society close to the opposition. Denouncing the opacity and corruption that reign in the armed forces, she is often quoted by the international press. “But she has been working on these subjects for years without any problem, apart from the very widely shared fear of political persecution”note Me Gonzalez. On Tuesday, the White House said it was “deeply concerned” about the fate of Mr.me San Miguel.
Mme San Miguel has been the subject of protection measures by the Inter-American Court of Justice since 2012, due to the repeated threats to which she has been a victim. “She was one of the most reviled figures in public media, recalls Lexys Rendon of the LabPaz organization. Diosdado Cabello very often attacked her during his weekly television program. » A former soldier, today vice-president of the United Socialist Party, Mr. Cabello is seen as one of the strong men in power.
For nearly four days, Rocio San Miguel’s lawyers tried, in vain, to obtain information on the reasons, location and conditions of his detention. As of Sunday morning, human rights defenders denounced the arbitrary arrest and forced disappearance of the activist. Amnesty International and more than 200 Venezuelan social organizations demand his immediate release. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and Washington have also expressed their concern. Mme San Miguel has dual Venezuelan and Spanish citizenship.
You have 55% of this article left to read. The rest is reserved for subscribers.