July 21, 2019
North American activists, calling themselves the Embassy Protection Collective, defended the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, DC from being usurped by representatives of the US-backed and unelected Juan Guaidó. The collective was acting with the permission of the democratically elected, legitimate government of Venezuela. For 37 days the collective bravely defended the embassy ensuring that the Vienna Convention was upheld.
After failing to force the Embassy Protectors out by cutting off food, water, and electricity, the US government on May 18 arrested the last four solidarity activists – Margaret Flowers, Kevin Zeese, Adrienne Pine, and David Paul – and subsequently charged them with “interference with certain protective functions,” a federal offense (18 U.S. Code §”118). These heroic four now face up to a year in prison and fines up to $100,000 each for trying to defend international law.
They are continuing their “efforts in solidarity with the people of Venezuela by defending themselves in federal court.” In their own words: “We know the United States has virtually unlimited resources and the Trump administration is angry that the protection of the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, DC got international news coverage and put a spotlight on the US violation of the Vienna Convention by illegally invading the embassy with more than 100 police, many in paramilitary gear, and allowing a fictional ambassador of a failed US coup to treat the embassy as his own.”
The Task Force on the Americas (https://taskforceamericas.org/), a 33-year-old human rights organization, recognizes our responsibility to stand in solidarity with the Embassy Protectors and endorses their defense campaign. Consistent with our vision of world peace and our mission “to educate North American citizens about realities in the Americas and the role the US plays there,” we urge all people of good will to:
- Donate generously to the legal defense (https://defendembassyprotectors.org/support-embassy-protectors/) so that they can “continue to challenge US imperialism and military intervention.”
- Endorse their defense campaign (https://defendembassyprotectors.org/list-of-endorsers/) both as individuals and as organizations.
- Help publicize developments in their case (https://defendembassyprotectors.org/home/)
- Hold actions in solidarity.