WHEREAS, the defense of freedom of the press and freedom of expression - as an essential exponent of freedom of thought - underpins the proper functioning of democracy and respect for the most basic human rights
WHEREAS, the current political regime in Venezuela has as one of its priorities the persecution and repression of any expression or manifestation contrary to its autocratic and oppressive interests
WHEREAS, these aims - contrary to the most basic individual and social rights - usually require the collaboration -active or passive- of third parties who thus become part of the repressive apparatus or framework of the regime - intentionally or unintentionally
WHEREAS, the Chairman of Telefónica, José María Álvarez-Pallete, has repeatedly appealed to the need to strengthen freedom of expression and the right to privacy
WHEREAS, there are reports - from members - that the Spanish company Teléfonica, in its capacity as telephone operator in Venezuela, actively participated in the blocking of 51 digital media outlets - including the newspaper El Nacional - thereby hindering access to news coverage and contributing to the restriction of the right of Venezuelan citizens to inform and be informed
WHEREAS, it was also denounced that the Spanish company Telefónica participated - at the request of the Venezuelan government - in the tapping of one and a half million phone calls of Venezuelan citizens - which violated their right to privacy and also put their own physical safety at risk
WHEREAS, Principle 5 of the Chapultepec Declaration states: "Prior censorship, restrictions on the circulation of the media or on the dissemination of their messages, the arbitrary imposition of information, the creation of obstacles to the free flow of information and limitations on the free practice and mobilization of journalists are directly opposed to freedom of the press"
THE 78TH IAPA GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLVES
To condemn the systematic blocking of independent journalism websites in Venezuela.
To warn about the enforcement of illegitimate legislation that contradicts the universal principles of human rights - and that is antagonistic to European or U.S. legislation.
To promote meetings to denounce this situation before the Organization of American States (OAS), the European Parliament, the United States Congress and other entities - in order to restore the infringed right to active and passive information of the Venezuelan people.
To request – by notary in Spain - the president of Telefónica, Jose María Álvarez-Pallete, to express his conformity or non-conformity with the oppressive measures adopted by Nicolás Maduro's regime.
To request the institutional investors of Telefónica to express whether or not they agree with the presence of the company in Venezuela and its collaboration with Nicolás Maduro's regime in violating the Venezuelan people's right to information - and the violation of universal law.