Venezuela, Non-Aligned Movement Condemn Israel’s ‘Illegal’ Assault on Gaza

Venezuela denounced Israel’s efforts to “exterminate the Palestinian people” and called for an immediate ceasefire.
World leaders pose for the family photo at the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Kampala, Uganda.

Mexico City, Mexico, January 23, 2024 ( – Venezuela joined 120 countries from the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in condemning Israel’s military campaign against the Palestinian people in Gaza at the bloc’s latest summit in Kampala, Uganda.

In its 47-point statement published at the conclusion of its 19th summit this weekend, the NAM bloc denounced “the illegal Israeli military aggression on the Gaza Strip, the indiscriminate attacks against Palestinian civilians, civilian objects, [and] the forced displacement of the Palestinian population.”

The Non-Aligned Movement further called for an “immediate and durable humanitarian ceasefire” and an end to Israel’s “abhorrent” occupation of Palestinian territory, while also condemning Israel’s illegal settlement construction and reiterating its support for a two-state solution.

During his address at the NAM gathering in Uganda, Venezuelan Minister for Foreign Affairs Yván Gil lamented that through its military campaign, Israel seeks to “exterminate the Palestinian people” and that its conduct was destroying the possibility of a two-state solution. 

Venezuela has been a vocal champion of South Africa’s case at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) accusing Israel of violating the 1948 Genocide Convention and calling for provisional measures to halt military attacks.

The Hague-based “World Court” heard arguments from South Africa’s and Israel’s legal teams on January 11 and 12, respectively, and is expected to issue a ruling in the coming weeks.

Caracas has been a firm backer of Palestinian rights dating back to former President Hugo Chávez, who severed diplomatic ties with Israel in 2009 over an earlier assault on Gaza by Israel. Current President Nicolás Maduro has likewise expressed public support for Palestine since the beginning of Israel’s campaign in October. Venezuela sent a humanitarian aid shipment to Gaza as well.

Many Global South countries have also taken public stances to condemn Israeli actions in Gaza. During the Kampala summit, Cuban First Vice-President Salvador Valdés Mesa described Israel’s actions as “one of the cruelest genocidal acts ever to be recorded by history” during his address. 

Gil told RT that the “genocide Israel is carrying out in Palestine” was the “most important conflict in the world because all of the principles of international law are being violated.”

A victim of illegal unilateral coercive measures, Venezuela has played a leading role on the world stage in demanding respect for international law and is one of the founding members of the 20-member Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations (UN).

Following the conclusion of the NAM meeting, Gil represented his country at the South Summit, the decision-making body of the Group of 77, also held in Uganda. Founded in 1964 by 77 non-aligned nations, the Group of 77 plus China brings together over 130 countries from the Global South.

At the South Summit, Venezuela’s foreign minister called for a more democratic and inclusive international financial system and for Global South countries to “no longer allow the application of criminal, unjust and illegal unilateral coercive measures, neocolonial measures that slow down our development.”

Venezuela held numerous bilateral exchanges with world leaders on the sidelines of both summits, including meetings with his counterparts from Angola, Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Cuba, India, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Tanzânia, Tunisia, and South Africa, among others; as well as with UN Secretary-General António Guterres and General Assembly President Dennis Francis.

During his address to the NAM, Guterres echoed calls for an end to the “outdated, unjust and unfair global financial system” and reiterated his demand for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza.

Edited by Ricardo Vaz in Caracas.