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Attorney General Ortega D?az: Granting political asylum to Rosales for the crime of corruption is illegal

According to the Convention on Political Asylum between Peru and Venezuela, Manuel Rosales cannot be given asylum because he is being charged with illicit enrichment, a crime outlined in the established in the Law against Corruption, explained Luisa Ortega Díaz, Venezuela’s Attorney General.

“Every sovereign state can give political asylum to any person, but the convention on asylum between Peru and Venezuela states that this mechanism can only be used in cases in which a citizen commits a political crime,” the Attorney General clarified in an appearance on ‘Dando y Dando’, a program broadcast by Venezolana de Televisión.

She added that “Manuel Rosales is not being charged with any political crime, but with a crime established in the Law against Corruption; this could never be confused with a political crime.”

Ortega Díaz said that when the Public Ministry has accused certain people, they have immediately gone to the media to discredit the Attorney General’s Office and judges, instead of using this effort to defend themselves, to give valid arguments and to clarify the reasons why they are not guilty.

The Attorney General said her office and judges work together, and that is has always been like that; there is a strong relation between the Public Ministry and the courts.

After an analysis of the Public Ministry’s investigation and the circumstances surrounding the process related to Manuel Rosales, an arrest warrant for him was issued on Wednesday.

Rosales is accused of the crime of illicit enrichment following a report by the Venezuelan General Accountability Office published on July 19th, 2007.  This was preceded by an investigation held between 2002 and 2004 into sworn testimony by Rosales, who was then governor of the state of Zulia.

Agencia Bolivariana de Noticias (ABN), Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Press Office / April 23, 2009

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