The Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation (CPPC), following its stands in defence of the sovereignty of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and international law, considers very serious the precedent set by a UK court to recognise Juan Guaidó as interim president of Venezuela, claiming the need to comply with the decision already taken by the British government on this subject.

This clearly shows the political and non-legal nature of this recognition. Despite the hostile decisions that some governments may take driven by ideological or other reasons, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is a sovereign member state in its own right, with the competent political and administrative bodies in place and with which, moreover, the UK maintains formal state-to-state diplomatic relations involving the authorities of both countries. In light of Venezuelan law, international law and the Charter of the United Nations, the government headed by Nicolas Maduro is the legitimate representative of the state of Venezuela.

In this context, the subordination of the force of law to the law of force endorses an intrusion of a neo-colonialist bias by the British government in the sovereignty of another state. But its reach goes further.

The court was called upon to rule in the context of the dispute between the Central Bank of Venezuela and the Bank of England due to the latter’s refusal to return gold belonging to the state of Venezuela, worth more than one billion dollars, of which it was faithful depositary. By deliberating as it did, the court prevents the repatriation of that asset and ensures that it remains in the possession of the Bank of England. (In Portugal, the Novo Banco does not let go more than 1.5 billion dollars belonging to Venezuela, while the government declares itself incompetent to intervene in the matter. The US administration set the tone by diverting to the construction of the border wall with Mexico about six hundred million dollars of Venezuelan assets confiscated by the United States).

On the other hand, under the terms of the agreement signed between Venezuela and the UN under the United Nations Development Programme, the proceeds from the sale of this asset were intended for the purchase of food, medicines and medical equipment to deal with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, worsened by the sanctions imposed by the United States. The court’s deliberation prevents the achievement of that objective and, in fact, condemns the Venezuelan people to further suffering.

Finally, the succession of threats, sanctions, aggressions, confiscations and other illegalities against the Venezuelan State and people are part of the campaign devised by the US regime to overthrow the Venezuelan government and install a vassal regime.

The United Kingdom has been interested and actively involved in this campaign, as it has done in relation to Iraq, Libya, Syria or Afghanistan, for example. Documents made public in May this year revealed meetings between officials of a secret unit of the Foreign Office called “Venezuela Reconstruction” and representatives of the Venezuelan opposition – which included Vanessa Neumann, on behalf of Juan Guaidó – to discuss the promotion of British business in Venezuela after a planned coup.

The CPPC calls for active solidarity with the Venezuelan people and government, of all those who defend peace, the United Nations Charter and the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic, aware that only in this way will it be possible to successfully combat this campaign and confident that the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, with the help of its friends, will eventually overcome all obstacles.

The National Board of the CPPC

July 2020


World Peace Council