Yesterday, the Human Rights Foundation (HRF) declared Leopoldo López a prisoner of conscience and called on the Venezuelan government for his immediate release. After his arrest on Tuesday and a court ruling on Thursday, López will remain in pre-trial custody at Ramo Verde prison in Los Teques, Miranda.
“With López’s imprisonment and the brutally repressive tactics that police, armed forces, and paramilitary groups are using against his supporters, the Venezuelan state has lost any democratic façade it may have had,” said Garry Kasparov, chairman of HRF.
After analyzing the evidence against López, HRF determined he was “persecuted, arrested, and imprisoned exclusively for having peacefully exercised his right to freedom of speech” and that “his actions to rally his followers under the slogan ‘the street is the way out’ constitute protected speech under international human rights law.”
Source: Human Rights Foundation.