UK court asks for more clarity on Venezuela presidency recognition

Protestors demonstrate in February 2019 following a decision by the Bank of England to freeze assets held by Venezuela. Photo: AFP

The Court of Appeal in London on Monday asked the High Court to re-examine a ruling that said the UK government “unequivocally recognised” Venezuela’s opposition leader as president.

By Yahoo News

Oct 5, 2020

A High Court judge in July interpreted a statement by Britain’s former foreign minister Jeremy Hunt as meaning London backed Juan Guaido as interim president of the troubled Latin American country.

The ruling came in a dispute over $1 billion in gold reserves that Venezuela’s Central Bank (BCV) wants released from the Bank of England to help fund the country’s response to the coronavirus crisis.

The Bank of England said it was unable to act on the instructions because it was “caught in the middle” of competing claims for the presidency after disputed elections in 2018.

At the heart of the case is who has the power to direct the release of the reserves.

The Venezuelan central bank’s board was appointed by the government of President Nicolas Maduro, successor to the late anti-US populist Hugo Chavez.

But a rival ad hoc board appointed by Guaido had asked for the release to be denied.

Guiado’s January 2019 claim to the presidency was backed by the United States and dozens of other countries.

– ‘Access to Venezuela’s gold’ –

News of the appeals court request was met triumphantly by the Maduro regime.

The British court decision is another defeat” for “the illegal band led by” Guaido and “their ambitions to make off with Venezuela’s riches,” Freddy Nanez, minister for communication and information, said on Twitter.

Read More: Yahoo News – UK court asks for more clarity on Venezuela presidency recognition

La Patilla in English