Uruguay to withdraw from Rio Pact citing misuse against Venezuela
MONTEVIDEO, Sept. 24 (Xinhua) -- Uruguay will withdraw from the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance, also known as the Rio Pact, because it is being wrongly used against Venezuela's government, Uruguayan Foreign Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa said on Tuesday.
The announcement came a day after 16 of the 19 pact members voted to employ the pact to impose sanctions against Venezuela's leader Nicolas Maduro, accusing him of criminal activities including drug trafficking and money laundering.
Monday's resolution "sets a very serious precedent in the matter of international law, particularly in relation to the principle of peaceful resolution of disputes and the principle of nonintervention, including the possibility of armed intervention," Nin Novoa told reporters at a press conference in Montevideo.
"Uruguay cannot join or permit a measure of this kind, which allows foreigners to enter a country to capture, extradite and sanction without the permission of the country," said Nin Novoa.
Uruguay will also denounce the Rio Pact as an "obsolete" and "inapplicable" treaty at the Organization of American States, said Nin Novoa, adding that the process of withdrawing will take two years to complete.
Signed in 1947 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the Rio Pact was designed to be a mechanism of mutual defense on the principle that an attack against one country in the Americas was an attack on the others.