The voice of journalism in Venezuela has been fading during these 21 years of dictatorship by Maduro and Chavismo, violating international treaties and provisions on freedom of expression, cutting off Venezuelans from the right to inform and be informed.
The statement was made by the deputy for Mérida State, Alexis Paparoni, in the ordinary session of the Delegate Commission held online this Tuesday during the debate on the persecution, harassment and attacks on the media by Nicolás Maduro’s regime.
He indicated that this complaint is made public by the legitimate National Assembly before the country and the world about the attacks on the Social Communication media by those who today usurp power. Noting that at the beginning of this 2021 they have attacked various media outlets using different government bodies that the usurpers of power control unconstitutionally.
He referred specifically to the case of the abuses against the digital channel VPI TV’s local office, who was closed and their equipment expropriated without any explanation, affecting hundreds of Venezuelans who work in said media and the right of thousands of citizens to be well informed .
He added that the same happened with the newspaper Panorama in Zulia State, a reference within Venezuelan journalism with regional and national history. The Seniat (Tax and revenue service) applied a sanction, closing its headquarters for 5 days.
“There are complaints and accusations supported by serious social and human rights organizations of primitive attacks by the usurper government against a number of media and informational portals such as Efecto Cocuyo, Tal Cual, Radio Fe y Alegría, Caraota Digital, El Pitazo, Espacio Público among others, coupled with a permanent campaign of disinformation of slander and discredit by official media such as VTV and Globovisión,” assured the parliamentarian.
He added that Venezuelans do not accept and rebel against this despite the brutal measures and force exercised by the regime. They refuse to have their right to be informed of daily events inside and outside the country taken away.
“The (dissenting) voices in Venezuela have been fading in these 21 years of ‘Chavista’ and ‘Madurista’ regime. We are in the presence of a flagrant violation of international treaties and provisions signed by Venezuela, it is inadmissible to curtail the right to inform and be informed of the citizens of the country. This is an unacceptable provocation and threat to subvert the peace,” stressed Paparoni.
He assured that this situation has not only occurred at the beginning of 2021, but that since 1999 Chavismo has dealt blows to the media, journalists and press workers in Venezuela. This constant attack by these governments have made Venezuela the second worst country in Latin America in terms of guarantees for the development of journalism, surpassed only by Cuba.
“The regime’s strategy has not only been to close (radio) stations, print media, national and local television stations, they have also blocked international signals such as NTN24, CNN in Spanish, Aztec television, El Tiempo TV, an Argentine network that also went off the air by Conatel’s determination, Todo Noticias, RCN de Colombia, Caracol’s network of radio stations and thus an infinity of international media signals that were taken from cable and satellite television companies that provide services in Venezuela.”
He indicated that the tactics to achieve communicational hegemony have made the usurper Maduro continue to apply unfeasible fines to the media, restriction of basic resources, threats and arrests of journalists and press workers when they oppose to change their editorial line therefore, some were forced to leave the country and others were arrested without any legal justification.
He described the profession of journalism in Venezuela as titanic and brave, for which he recognized journalists, press workers and social media on behalf of the National Assembly and the Venezuelan people, who despite so much adversity, day after day they continue on the streets in search of information, telling the truth and showing the problems of the communities.
“Thank you, journalists, for staying firm and continuing this difficult task. The country thanks you and is proud of you. No more media shutdowns. No more persecution of journalists and press workers. Truth and justice will always prevail. There are more of us who fight and want freedom, which we have defended so much and we will continue defending. That’s why from this rostrum we shout in unison long live the free exercise of journalism in Venezuela,” concluded Paparoni.