By Samuel Morales Escuela.
Spanish officials, represented by the Independent Trade Union Center of Officials (Csif in Spanish), the largest union of these workers in the country, warned this Thursday of the “situation of vulnerability” in which the personnel of the Spanish embassy in Venezuela and requested to the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs guarantee their security.
The ruler Nicolás Maduro verbally harassed and insulted Spanish Primer Minister Pedro Sanchez and outgoing Spanish Ambassador to Venezuela Jesus Silva and threatened to have Silva expelled before the new envoy arrives. The regime has also arrested and released at least five Embassy workers, including four male security guards and an elderly female cook.
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Sanchez, Silva, and the harassed workers were all accused of being in on Leopoldo Lopez’s escape last Friday. Lopez, the Venezuelan most famous political prisoners, resurfaced in Madrid Sunday morning, after 18 months as a guest of Silva, who sheltered him after Lopez bolted house arrest and briefly joined a military uprising against Maduro in early 2019.
Specifically, the union asked the Spanish Foreign Ministry to guarantee the security of all personnel by extending the diplomatic passport, which guarantees invulnerability, and the service passport, which accredits them as embassy staff.
Besides the arrests, the homes of several workers assigned to the diplomatic legation got raided, which Spain has considered a clear breach of the obligations contained in the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.
The requested ID documents should also be extended to the spouse of the worker and their minor children “to protect their protection and freedom of movement,” the union added.
The Csif said it was making this request “after the personnel of the Spanish Embassy in Caracas have been harassed by the security forces of Maduro’s government after the departure from the country of opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez.
The leader had been staying at the Ambassador’s residence since April 30, 2019, when he abandoned the house arrest he was under, to join a military uprising that finally failed.”