- Fatal protests against regime underline hypocrisy of Sinn Féin’s support for Maduro -
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Trade, Darragh O’Brien TD has called on Sinn Féin to publicly withdraw its support for the Maduro regime in Venezuela following further fatal protests in the country.
Facing a global downturn in oil prices and an annualised inflation rate that is expected to exceed 1,000 percent in 2017, Venezuela’s economy is now one of the worst performing in the world.
While President Nicolás Maduro has maintained his grip on power by becoming increasingly autocratic and undermining the rule of law, the poverty rate has grown to 82%.
Despite the fact that just 25% of the Venezuelan population are able to maintain a regular diet, Sinn Féin has repeatedly expressed solidarity with the regime through Ard Fhéis motions and has actively worked to legitimise it through providing handpicked election observers.
Deputy O’Brien stated, “While Sinn Fein has gone quiet on its once vociferous support for SYRIZA in Greece, it has also expressed solidarity with and supported other political movements.
“The Maduro regime has overseen a dramatic collapse in the Venezuelan economy, plunging living standards, escalating crime levels and endemic corruption at all levels of the state. Perhaps hoping that it would escape any scrutiny, Sinn Fein has continually expressed support and solidarity with this disastrous autocratic regime through motions at its Ard Fhéis in 2014 and 2015. Both motions were initiated by its ruling Ard Chomhairle.
“The sheer hypocrisy of passing motions supporting a corrupt autocratic regime while making statements about human rights appears to have been lost on the party.
“The party’s elected representatives have also gone so far as to play the part of sham observers in elections which have been subject to overt manipulation by the regime and then ignored.
“The Maduro regime refused to allow international observers except those handpicked from favourable organisations such as Sinn Féin, who were more than happy to play along with this farce.
“While Sinn Féin is clearly comfortable with autocratic rule internally, no Irish political party should be allowed to support such corrupt practices internationally without robust challenge. It’s time for Sinn Féin to publicly withdraw its support and stand up for democracy and the rule of law in Venezuela,” Deputy O’Brien concluded.