Russia accuses Washington of using Saab case to pressure Venezuela

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zajárova said on Friday that the criminal prosecution of Venezuelan diplomat Alex Saab in Cape Verde is politically motivated.

He added that Washington exerted strong pressure on the Cape Verdean authorities in an attempt to obtain Saab’s extradition and that it uses the diplomat “as an additional lever of pressure on the Venezuelan government. We see this as a serious threat to the efforts of the parties to find mutually acceptable ways for the future development of this country, “he said.

This Friday the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation established a position on the case of the special envoy of Venezuela, Alex Saab through a statement.

Here is the full statement:

Russia, as a country accompanying the negotiation process between the Government of Venezuela and the representatives of the opposition Unitary Platform, continually urges all members of the international community to contribute to creating the most favorable and constructive environment possible around the dialogue that it is currently being developed in Mexico City. In this sense, some actions by external actors generate concern, since they create risks of undermining the fragile trust achieved between the parties.

In particular, we would like to once again draw attention to the situation related to the special envoy of the Government of Venezuela Alex Saab. As is known, in June 2020, he was detained at the request of the United States by the Cape Verdean law enforcement agencies. Since then, Washington has exerted strong pressure on the Cape Verdean authorities and the judicial system of this country, in an effort to obtain his extradition.

We consider the criminal prosecution of Alex Saab, who has diplomatic status and was on a humanitarian mission, politically motivated.

Leaving aside the legal aspects of this problem, on the surface there is a clear projection of the line of the “culmination” of the Alex Saab case in relation to the current dialogue process in Mexico City. Now, when important issues are discussed there in a substantive way, and that to one degree or another affect US policy towards Venezuela, Washington is, in fact, trying to use Alex Saab as a lever of additional pressure on the government. Venezuelan. We see this as a serious threat to the efforts of the parties to find mutually acceptable avenues for the future development of this country.

We emphasize that only Venezuelans themselves can determine their fate and are capable of overcoming existing disagreements in Venezuelan society within the framework of a mutually respectful political process. We consider it important to give Venezuelans the opportunity to make that decision on their own. Attempts at destructive outside interference are inappropriate, in this context; The responsibility for the consequences of such actions will fall on those who directly or indirectly take them.

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