Venezuelan Supreme Court Extends Economic Emergency State of Exception

The high court renewed the Maduro administration's emergency powers with the aim of tackling the country's deep recession. 

By Jeanette Charles
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Venezuelan Supreme Court in downtown Caracas (teleSUR).
Venezuelan Supreme Court in downtown Caracas (teleSUR).

Caracas, September 23rd 2016 (venezuelanalysis.com) - The Venezuelan Supreme Court issued a ruling Thursday extending the state of exception in an effort to address concerns regarding the nation’s economy. The pevious decree, N. 2452, published in the Official Gazette on September 13th, was renewed this week under Sentence 810 granting wide-ranging decision making powers to the executive branch.

The decree allows the executive branch to adopt and apply urgent measures with the objective of assuring Venezuelan people’s full exercise of fundamental human rights. The decree emphasizes the executive branch's prerogative to preserve “internal order” and ensure the Venezuelan people’s access to essential goods, services, and medicines among others.

The decree stresses that the government has faced “an alarming, grave [economic emergency].” The Supreme Court highlights that current social and economic conditions  “harm the Venezuelan people.” The statement reiterates that the main purpose of the decree is to first and foremost preserve and guarantee the rights and constitutional guarantees of the Venezuelan people.

The Venezuelan high court clarified that the presidential decree does not restrict rights nor guarantees such as those relating to the rights to life, prohibition of detention and torture, the right to due process, the right to information and other intangible human rights.

Additionally, the court declared null a recent National Assembly resolution rejecting the state of exception approved on September 20.

On September 2, the Supreme Court declared that, “[the National Assembly’s decision is] manifestly unconstitutional and therefore, absolutely void of all legal validity and effectiveness [as are] all acts concerning or emanating from the National Assembly, including laws, while the contempt of the Electoral Chamber is maintained.”  The aforementioned statement addresses an ongoing investigation into the alleged fraudulent elections concerning three legislators from Amazonas.

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