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Petkoff replies to Attorney re Venezuela's justice system

By Teodoro Petkoff* | Tal Cual

29.07.05 | Yesterday I talked about the Editorial that threw the Attorney General/Prosecutor into a rage. Today Tal Cual Editor Petkoff, a former very good friend of Prosecutor Isaias Rodriguez, gives him hell for his attitude. Well deserved. Will Isaias also investigate whether he can jail Teodoro? *Translated by Miguel Octavio.

Reply to Isaias by Teodoro Petkoff

Yesterday the poet Isaias had his fuses blown. He accused the Andean Commission of Jurists, the Center for Justice and International Law (Cejil) and 83 jurists from nine countries of “improper interference “ in Venezuelan matters, because they demanded respect for the constitutional rights of lawyer Carlos Ayala Corao, President, by the way, of the Andean Commission of Jurists, who has been charged by the Prosecutor’s Office. He announced the opening of an investigation of daily El Universal to find out if an editorial of that daily was a punishable offense and eventually take the appropriate measures in the case. He also accuses Tal Cual of being part of an international conspiracy, of “harassment” against him, promoted according to guidelines of the new manual for coups, elaborated by the CIA. Isaias, without any doubt, is delirious.

First of all, it is surprising that the representative from a Government characterized by its intromissions, whose President frequently gives opinions about internal matters of other countries, without hiding its links with political sectors of those countries, would complain about the “intromission by the alluded international organizations”. The world of today, Isaias, is like that. Countries are more interdependent than ever and no Government can believe it is sheltered from international scrutiny. If the prosecutor behaved correctly, nobody would demand anything.

But the Prosecutor’s office, Isaías himself has said it, is a body which you can have little trust in and it forces jurists from the Continent to have a watchful eye given its actions.

In second place, the announcement of the opening of an investigation against El Universal already shows that those who are concerned with the respect of the constitutional rights of Venezuelans on the part of the Government, are quite correct in being worried. Isaias attempts to place obstacles on the exercise of freedom of speech. He pretends to charge El Universal with nothing but “a crime of opinion”. Isaias has revealed to us his authentic vocation as a censor of the press.

In the third place, the reference to Tal Cual is frankly incomprehensible.

To occupy ourselves with the Prosecutor’s office we don’t need to consult any CIA manual, it is sufficient with the website of the Public Ministry (MP) where Isaias places his considerations about the organization he directs. It is the Prosecutor himself who has said that the MP is full of “family” groups, of groups of “friends”, of people permanently “on leave”, of “cattle rustlers”, of “despots” with those below them and “disrespectful” of those above them. First he spoke of “cliques that brake, delay, slow down, block” . Later he corrected himself and qualified them as “ship nuts*”, which are impossible to loosen up. The poet denounced that his underlings “lack the preparation and do not have the technical knowledge in order to make decisions”. How does he pretend when he says things as serious (and as true) of his civil servants, that people abroad should not be concerned about the administration of justice in our country? Isaias complains because El Universal spoke of “justice on its knees”, but if we rely only on what he says, it is truly not on its knees, but on the floor, like a rag.

* In Spanish this implies you are so “screwed” into your position, nobody can convince you otherwise.

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