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RED VZLA Urgent Request to the OTP-3

REDACTED Page 10 of 190 employees, journalists and media employees as well as human rights and NGO leaders and lawyers, who have been victims of serious and repeated threats and attempts to their lives and liberties on the basis of their political beliefs. Although the exact numbers of cases are unconfirmed due to the fear of reporting victimization and the absence of adequate judicial remedies, the numerous incidents of exiled individuals and the consistency of the reports illustrate the existing policy of the GoV. All of the crimes allegedly committed since early February 2014 until the submission of this communication appear to fall within the jurisdiction of the ICC. In the below paragraphs, the authors provides summarized information on the places and the time- period of the alleged commission of the crimes, and the persons or groups involved. It is to be noted that while general allegations will be made in relation to each crime relying on open source corroborated by civil society organizations, selected specific incidents that are particular illustrative of the allegations will also be presented to illustrate the serious nature of the allegations and to demonstrate that there is at least substantial grounds to suspect that crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court are being committed, requiring further analysis and consideration by the OTP through the preliminary examination process. 1.Factual allegations The main affected areas of the violence arising from the situation include at least cities and residential neighbourhoods in the Metropolitan District of Caracas and the states of Aragua, Táchira, Carabobo, Merida, Lara, Zulia and Miranda. On 14 April 2013, Nicolás Maduro, who had been designated as Chávez’s successor by Chávez himself, narrowly won the elections called for following the death of former President Hugo Chávez17 by 50.8%.18 Shortly after this victory, Maduro’s leadership was challenged by Henrique Capriles, runner-up and opposition leader and by masses of civilians, who claimed that 17 The CNE’s first bulletin, with over 99 per cent of the votes counted, indicated Maduro had won with 7,505,338 votes (50.66 per cent) over Capriles who obtained 7,270,403 (49.07 per cent). 18 NYT. (2013) Maduro gained 50.8% of the vote to 49.1% to Capriles. Venezuela Gives Chávez Protégé Narrow Victory. New York Times. [Online] 14 April. Available from: Chávez.html [Accessed 7 September] (noting that in an unexpectedly close race, Nicolás Maduro, Hugo Chávez’s handpicked political heir, was chosen by Venezuelans to serve the remainder of Chávez’s six- year term as president); See: USA TODAY. (2013) Officials say Maduro defeated Henrique Capriles by only about 200,000 votes. USA Today. [Online] Available from: capriles/2081677/ [Accessed 28 August, 2015] (Noting that Venezuelan officials say Nicolás Maduro defeated Henrique Capriles by only about 300,000 votes; the margin was 50.8% to 49.1%)

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