For its part, the defense of the Venezuelan Ambassador Alex Saab made known its opinion regarding the case and the effects it has had; and also indicated that “it may have a negative impact” on the development of the political dialogue on the Venezuelan crisis in Mexico City.
Likewise, Baltasar Garzón, member of Saab’s international legal team, considered that the link of his client with the government of Nicolás Maduro may have some influence on the dialogues in Mexico between that executive power and the political platform that opposes him.
“Undoubtedly, without having more information than this decision (of the Constitutional Court) of Cape Verde, (Saab’s case) can have a negative impact on the progress of the open dialogue in Mexico”, he said, answering a question from the Voice of America regarding the recent communiqué from the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the case.
For her part, Russian spokeswoman Maria Zakharova indicated last Friday that the concern of Vladimir Putin’s government is that “external agents” use cases such as that of Alex Saab to “undermine the fragile trust”.
Dialogue in Mexico
It should be noted that Russia is part of this dialogue, as an accompanying country, and he also warned that the United States “is essentially trying to use Saab as an additional lever to pressure the Venezuelan government”.
Garzón considered that the judicial case against Saab does have “influence” on the dialogue on Venezuela in Mexico; where the Venezuelan government and its opponents are trying to agree on seven main points, such as the guarantees of electoral rights and the lifting of economic sanctions.
He alleged that this is “a legal persecution” against a person who obviously has “a major impact” on the relations between Venezuela and the United States. Both Caracas and its defenders identify Saab as Special Envoy for humanitarian and diplomatic affairs.
However, David Rivkin, Saab’s lawyer in the United States, emphasized the decision made by Cape Verde and also refrained from discussing the issue of the influence of Alex Saab’s case in the dialogue in Mexico. “I have no ideas about those negotiations”, he said, although he valued that the Cape Verdean authorities should release his client “as a matter of law” and because he enjoys “total diplomatic immunity”.
Saab is not sitting in the negotiations in Mexico.
Meanwhile, his other lawyers, Femi Falana, Vania Costa Ramos and Rutsel Silvestre, qualified Garzón’s opinion by warning that “Mr. Saab is not (sitting) at the negotiating table in Mexico”.
According to the lawyers’ recent statements, they indicated that “the Cape Verde courts should still answer; for example, the precautionary measures of a United Nations human rights committee and the decision of the 11th District Court of Appeals of Florida, United States, on Saab’s immunity is still awaited”.
Falana, for his part, denied that the defense is trying to “buy more time” by stating that they are only “taking advantage of the provisions of the law”.
Likewise, human rights violations continue against Ambassador Alex Saab, who was given permission to be taken to the city of Praia for health reasons, to which his defense has indicated that Saab has not been transferred, despite the decision of the Court of Appeals of Barlavento.
The Russian Embassy in Caracas clarified that the communiqué of its Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the case of Alex Nain Saab Moran did not represent an attempt to condition Mexico’s dialogue. It accused some media of falsely reporting with that approach. “Russia does not threaten the dialogue, but supports it”; Putin’s representation in Caracas wrote in his Twitter account.
Cellini warns, however, that the eventual extradition of Saab may generate “complicated internal situations” in Mexico’s negotiations.
“It does not imply that it will be lifted. It is an additional argument to reach agreements in the near future. Saab’s situation can be a variable and can motivate the government to want to negotiate. It is a situation of the North American justice where the opposition has no incidence”, he points out.