Who is Francisco Cox – Controversial HR Report on Venezuela Co-Writer

Francisco Cox was appointed by the UN Human Rights Council, through resolution 42/25, of September 27, 2019, together with the Portuguese Marta Valiñas and the Scotsman Paul Seils, as a member of the self-appointed “Fact-finding independent mission” from the UN to inquire about the situation of Human Rights in Venezuela.

Cox was also a member of the IACHR’s investigative commission for the Ayotzinapa case, which continues to be an unsolved case.

It should be noted that this Chilean lawyer was the one who defended the Undersecretary General of the Government, Jovino Novoa, in his country during the civic-military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, accused of tax crimes. Cox was also a defender of the interests of the Chilean Minister of Education, Marcela Cubillos, after the violent student demonstrations that occurred in 2019 in Chile, where protests against the Piñera government resulted in hundreds of injuries and left more than 180 people with severe eye trauma, according to official figures from the Chilean National Institute of Human Rights.

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In that opportunity, Dennis Cortés, president of the Chilean Ophthalmology Society, gave the UN Commission a chilling fact: the number of injured by Chilean repressive forces in the eyes by rubber bullets is not only a record in the history of Chile, but also a precedent in the world. The Cox report found that no crimes against humanity were perpetrated in Chile.

In an open letter, sent by Chilean Human Rights lawyers to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, they called on the former president to review the role assigned to Francisco Cox to investigate the situation of Human Rights in Venezuela and Chile.

‘The public statement of Mr. Francisco Cox of last December 25, 2019, who is invested with the questionable status of an expert lawyer in human rights, clearly supports and transgresses any seriousness in the analysis or objectivity of the principles of international human rights law, that no crimes against humanity have been perpetrated in Chile,” was one of the first arguments used by the Chilean lawyers to request Bachelet review Cox’s appointment.

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“The former business partner of the former Minister of Justice of President Sebastián Piñera neglects all objectivity in his analysis and, exercising his role as political defender of the current government, flatly denies the serious violations of Human Rights and the possible responsibility of the (Chilean) president,” explain the human rights experts in the letter.

“Mr. Cox will be one of the agents sent by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to learn about the situation in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, a visit that seems completely unnecessary when the guidelines and ideological defenses of agent Cox are already known, being seriously violated minimum principles and standards in international human rights law,” this group of experts said earlier this year.

For his part, the Foreign Affairs Minister of Venezuela, Jorge Arreaza, questioned the report presented by Cox last Wednesday and expressed his opinion on the matter through his Twitter account: “The more we review this absurd report without rigor against Venezuela, the clearer it becomes that the careers as “experts” in human rights of Francisco Cox, Marta Valiñas and Paul Seils have come to an end. In Venezuela all forms of mercenaries are destined to fail,” he declared in the post.

Featured image: File photo courtesy of Sputnik.

(Ultimas Noticias)

Translation: OT/EF