Boric Gov’t in Chile Distances Itself After Jadue Praises Venezuela’s Human Rights Efforts

Jadue’s comments came in the context of the International Summit Against Fascism in Caracas.
Daniel Jadue is seated alongside Venezuelan Foreign Minister Felix Plascencia in front of a brightly colored screen.
Former presidential candidate in Chile Daniel Jadue addresses the International Summit Against Fascism alongside Venezuelan Foreign Minister Felix Plascencia.

Mexico City, Mexico, April 18, 2022 ( – The Gabriel Boric government in Chile distanced itself from comments made by Daniel Jadue after he praised Venezuela’s human rights record while in the country to participate in the International Summit Against Fascism in Caracas.

Jadue, a former presidential candidate and leading figure in the Communist Party of Chile,, highlighted the efforts by Venezuelan authorities to punish human rights violations, contrasting the lack of justice in cases of abuses by the armed forces in his native Chile.

The Chilean politician, who is also a longtime supporter of the Chávez and Maduro governments in Venezuela, highlighted recent episodes that saw Chilean state security forces appear to deliberately target the eyes of demonstrators during protests. In an exchange with Jadue, President Nicolás Maduro offered to provide surgery to those demonstrators who suffered injuries to their eyes.

Chilean Foreign Minister Antonia Urrejola said Jadue’s comments during the April 11-13 summit did not represent the Boric government’s position. Echoing Washington’s accusations that the Nicolás Maduro government is guilty of human rights violations, fellow Communist Party member Camila Vallejo, spokesperson for the Chilean government and cabinet member, said that Boric’s foreign policy was driven by “unrestricted respect for human rights”.

Venezuela has been cooperating with the International Criminal Court in its capacity as a complimentary court to address alleged human rights abuses by state officials and security forces, with the court recently opening an office in Caracas to facilitate its work.

Chilean President Gabriel Boric—a self-described moderate who defeated Jadue in the primary to determine the left candidate in Chile’s 2021 election—has sought to distance himself from leftist counterparts in the region, frequently criticizing the governments of Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua before and after his election as president. Boric, who took office in March, has faced declining approval numbers, with a recent poll showing only 28 percent support.

President Maduro has, in turn, has accused those who criticize the Bolivarian Revolution of cowardice.

In an interview with Venezuelan journalist and Culture Minister Ernesto Villegas Poljak, Jadue instead said that Boric’s stance reflected a “lack of convictions”.

“He has never proposed overcoming capitalism and neoliberalism and, as a result, it follows that he would want to differentiate himself from countries that do believe that there’s an alternative to neoliberalism and capitalism,” he argued.

Jadue also celebrated the Venezuelan government’s hosting of the International Summit Against Fascism, which was organized in the context of the 20th anniversary of the 2002 coup that briefly ousted the late Hugo Chávez from power before a mass mobilization defeated the coup.

Featuring over 200 participants from 52 countries, the event had panels and presentations on the rise of far-right and fascist movements around the world, as well as the need to strengthen solidarity movements.

Adrienne Pine, a critical medical anthropologist from the United States who participated in the summit, told Venezuelanalysis that the gathering gave her a sense of “hope” in the midst of a global scenario where policy makers in Washington “seem intent on cheering us on toward nuclear war.”

Pine added that she also felt relief upon seeing “that the media bubble that we live in here in the United States, in which collaborating with Nazis and NATO expansion are somehow taken for granted as heroic, is the exception to the global rule.”

“And that has to do with very different articulations of the praxis of fascism, where in the US and much of Europe it is pretty much understood as anything we don’t like, as opposed to an understanding in the Global South of modern fascism being rooted in neoliberal US military imperialism and drawing directly on the diasporic legacies of corporate state fascisms in Italy, Spain, Germany and Japan,” she concluded.

The summit likewise focused on the importance of alternative media to break the hegemony of corporate outlets and censorship efforts from social media platforms.

Edited by Ricardo Vaz in Caracas.