ICC prosecutor says he will open investigation into Venezuela

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International Criminal Court authoritative Karim Khan and Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro be a gathering astatine the Miraflores Palace, successful Caracas, Venezuela, November 3, 2021. Miraflores Palace/Handout via REUTERS

CARACAS, Nov 3 (Reuters) - International Criminal Court (ICC) authoritative Karim Khan said connected Wednesday helium volition unfastened an probe into imaginable crimes against humanity successful Venezuela, with the country's authorities saying it respects the determination but does not stock his opinion.

Khan has "determined that helium volition proceed to unfastened an probe to found the truth" of events successful Venezuela, according to a transcript of a memorandum of knowing signed by Khan and President Nicolas Maduro and shared by the government.

The authorities does not deliberation the concern successful the state "justifies the question from the preliminary introspection signifier to a probe phase," the memorandum added.

"The preliminary introspection that opened successful 2018 is thing much than a filtering signifier arsenic we determination into this caller stage," Khan said during an lawsuit broadcast connected authorities television.

The authoritative is connected the last time of his sojourn to the South American lipid nation.

Both Venezeula's absorption and its authorities person asked the ICC to look into alleged crimes perpetrated by their opponents. Opposition person Juan Guaido cheered the decision to unfastened the probe connected Twitter.

The ICC has been conducting a preliminary introspection into the state since 2018 and has said determination whitethorn beryllium crushed to judge officials successful Maduro's authorities person committed crimes against humanity.

Khan stressed the court's independency and said its investigations should not beryllium politicized.

"We respect his determination arsenic a state, though we person made wide we bash not stock it," said Maduro. "We person signed an statement that does guarantee, successful an effectual way, cooperation, affirmative complementarity, communal support, constructive dialog to question information and justice."

During his visit, Khan met with Maduro 3 times, portion relatives of radical detained oregon allegedly slain by the authorities held thoroughfare protests to request a gathering with the prosecutor.

The ICC, which prosecutes warfare crimes, tin lone officially measurement successful if a authorities is unwilling oregon incapable to prosecute applicable crimes successful its jurisdiction.

Reporting by Deisy Buitrago and Vivian Sequera successful Caracas, Additional reporting by Stephanie van den Berg successful The Hague Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Karishma Singh

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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