Commemoration of April 13th, 2012 in Venezuela
April 13th 2002, is a memorable date added to the momentous historical anniversaries of Venezuela. On this day a significant victory was accomplished, a victory forged through the triad: the people, leader and the armed forces of Venezuela. The unity of the three was a decisive factor in defeating the Coup d’ état of April 11th 2002, conducted by opposing national and foreign sectors, opposed to the exercise of our full sovereignty and opposed to an inclusive, participatory democracy committed with the principle of solidarity with the people of Latin America, the Caribbean and of the world.
On that very important day, April 13th, the streets of Caracas and all main cities of Venezuela, were filled with people clamouring for the return of President Chávez, who had been kidnapped and whose life was seriously threatened after being elected by a large majority of voters in a transparent, free and fair election process held on December 6th 1998.
There was a hidden agenda to overthrow the President and end Venezuelan institutionality, made up by the Constitution of 1999, the National Assembly and Public Powers. This plan had the support of prominent military officers, senior members of Venezuelan Churches, and organized national businessmen from the Business Chambers as well as some defectors from left movements that joined the attempt which had the support of foreign governments such as José María Aznar in Spain and George W. Bush in the United States of America, acting via the American military mission in Caracas.
It has been ten years to the day of the unfolding of the script aimed to destabilize an unquestionably democratic government in Latin America and the Caribbean. A government that chose the difficult path of Socialism to embark on the struggle against poverty and the exclusion of our people, which testifies to the social character of the transformational process, led by President Hugo Chávez.
Very difficult obstacles have been encountered on our road to growth and development within social justice. We must strengthen our efforts in order to avoid a repeat of the script of April 11th – the day the 2002 coup d’ état attempt began – it all depends on the unity and power of the above mentioned triad: people, leader and armed forces. A triad that, as we have said before, was crucial not only in the rescue of President Chávez on April 13th but also of the Venezuelan institutionality.
Venezuela calls for a democratic opposition, that shows respect for the Constitution and committed to abide by the political and electoral decisions emanating from the sovereign Venezuelan people, in the same manner as the government of President Chávez.
History has always been a great source of learning. The events of April 13th will never be repeated again. It should remain in our political-historical collective memory.