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The defense of Venezuelan diplomat Alex Saab today denounced the multiple violations of international law in the process brought against him by the U.S. government.
In a press release, the jurists stated that all the irregularities presented since the arbitrary detention of the ambassador on June 12, 2020, are "the result of a joint interstate and illegal operation" between Washington and Cape Verde, under the guise of a judicial cooperation procedure.
The team of defense lawyers recalled Alex Saab's status as Venezuela's special envoy and its deputy permanent representative to the African Union. He remained in arbitrary detention until October 16, 2021, when he was illegally transferred to Miami.
They further noted that the Venezuelan diplomat's arrest was orchestrated while he was on an extraordinary humanitarian mission to Iran, crucial to the interests of the South American nation that would likely offer solutions to combat the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures.
"This cannot reasonably be regarded as a coincidence and (...) encompasses several violations of international law, including the principles of sovereign equality, political independence, non-intervention in the internal affairs of states, and peaceful settlement of international disputes," the defense stated.
The experts said that Alex Saab's detention also involved abuse of Interpol's Red Notice Mechanism, violation of the official's diplomatic immunity, and systematic violations of human rights norms during his captivity.
#UnitedStates | The digital portal of the newspaper Voz de América reported that Judge Robert N. Scola Jr. agreed to lift the charges at the request of the U.S. Attorney's Office, specifically by the prosecutor, Kurt Lunkenheimer.https://t.co/NsJAkXo1qG
In the continuation of the trial, Miami federal judge Robert Scola dismissed the charges related to money laundering on seven of the eight counts against the diplomat.
Monday's court decisions come two weeks after the Venezuelan official's first court appearance, where he pleaded not guilty and said he would not collaborate to obtain a reduction in his sentence.
In 2018, Caracas accredited Saab as a special envoy to facilitate the procurement of medical supplies, food and other goods, in the face of the obstacles imposed by the U.S. blockade on the South American country.
According to denunciations by the Bolivarian Executive, his detention in Cape Verde responded to the siege campaign orchestrated by the former U.S. administration against Venezuela, to inflict more suffering on the people and destabilize its institutions and internal order.