Rome, May 16 (IANS/AKI) The Italian upper house of parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee chair on Thursday deplored an unauthorised police raid on the Venezuelan embassy in Washington DC and the arrest of four pro-government activists.
“I learn with great bitterness of the raid by the US police at the Venezuelan embassy in Washington,” Vito Petrocelli, from the ruling populist 5 Star Movement, said in a statement.
“This is a serious breach of the Vienna Convention and an act that hampers the path of dialogue and peace to which the Italian government is committed,” he added.
The deep crisis gripping Venezuela can only be resolved through respect for international law and the United Nations charter if the Latin American country is to avoid the fate of Libya and Syria, Petrocelli said in the statement.
“We need dialogue and mediation, not displays of force that are in clear violation of international law.”
Venezuela had not authorized US authorities to enter the embassy building, Vice-Minister for North American Relations, Carlos Ron, wrote on Twitter. Under the 1961 Vienna Convention, embassies are considered sovereign territory of the government they represent, making the action a violation of international law.
US police used a battering ram to get into the embassy, media reports said.
The alleged raid occurred the same day that high-level talks between Venezuela’s socialist government and the opposition took place in Norway, Jorge Valero, Venezuela’s Ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva said.