Venezuela defends human rights record

April 28, 2004 at 1:46 PM

WASHINGTON, April 27 (UPI) -- Venezuelan Minister of Interior and Justice Lucas Rincón Romero Wednesday said his government respects human rights.

The Venezuelan government also diligently observes the National Constitution and international treaties, Rincon Romero said.

On Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Lincoln Díaz-Balart, R-Fla., chairman of the Subcommittee on Freedom, Civil Liberties and Human Rights of the House Policy Subcommittee on the Americas, said abuses against human rights have continued to grow in Venezuela.

"There have been isolated cases," Rincon Romero responded. "But it does not mean that the government disrespects the rule of law."

The Chavez government has maintained claims of human rights violations are being used by the opposition to attack the government and hurt its image abroad.

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