Antigua rejects OAS Venezuela Resolution

The following statement was made after a vote was taken on a Resolution on the situation in Venezuela which included a paragraph that accepted the seating of a designee of the opposition-controlled National Assembly of Venezuela as the representative of Venezuela.  The Resolution was carried by a vote of 20 of 33 countries plus the representative of the National Assembly of Venezuela

Antigua and Barbuda cannot support this Resolution.

While we are concerned about the flow of migrants from Venezuela into other states and we sympathize with the burden being placed upon the Governments and people of those states, we recognize that the causes of migration from Venezuela are many; some flow from external factors not reflected in this Resolution.

Further, my delegation acknowledges that Venezuela has withdrawn from this organization in accordance with Article 143 of the Charter.

Therefore, we do not consider it to be a member-state of the OAS.

Antigua and Barbuda, like the vast majority of nations of the world and international organizations such as the United Nations, also recognizes the de facto government of Venezuela.

In that connection, we rejected each of the Resolutions adopted by a simple majority that have been named in this present resolution before us.

Indeed, we are persuaded, by legal advice,that the method employed in the Permanent Council, to seat a nominee of the National Assembly of Venezuela as a representative, was ultra vires of the OAS Charter and the rules of the Permanent Council.

It is a matter of record that Antigua and Barbuda formally registered at the Permanent Council that it reserves its right not to accept or be bound by any resolutions, declarations or positions of the Permanent Councilor any other organs of the OAS by a majority of 18 states that includes the purported representative of Venezuela.

This particular resolution before us, attempts,in its operative paragraph 1, to repeat the same process of seating a designee of the National Assembly of Venezuela that my delegation rejected in the Permanent Council.

This General Assembly is the supreme decision-making body of our Organization.

Its decisions, collectively made by all member states, bind all organs of this Institution.

But, delegations cannot bound by a decision made only by a simple majority that disregards and discounts the legitimate rights and positions of other member states.

In this regard, my delegation registers that it reserves its position on this resolution.

We wish it to be noted that we continue to reserve our rights not to recognize any resolutions or declarations adopted with the participation of a non-member state or anyone purporting to be a representative of a non-member state.

We wish our reservation to be footnoted.