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Tightening the grip: Concentration and abuse of power in Chávez´s Venezuela

Human Rights Watch

  • Abuso del poder
  • Autoritarismo
  • Sistemas políticos
  • Censura en medios de comunicación
  • Defensores de los derechos humanos
  • Libertad de pensamiento y expresión
  • Derecho internacional
  • Venezuela


These high-profile cases—and the others documented in this report—have had an impact not only on the individuals and groups directly involved, but also on many other Venezuelans who themselves have not been targeted. For judges, journalists, broadcasters and human rights defenders in particular, the government’s actions have sent a clear message: the president and his followers are willing and able to punish people who challenge or obstruct their political aims. While many Venezuelans continue to criticize the government, the prospect of facing similar reprisals—in the form of arbitrary or abusive state action—has undercut the ability of judges to adjudicate politically-sensitive cases, and forced journalists and rights defenders to weigh the consequences of publicizing information and opinions that are critical of the government.

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