Costa Rica names Maduro critic Manuel Ventura as new Foreign Minister
Costa Rica designated on Tuesday the judge Manuel Ventura, a former judge for the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and a harsh critic of the Venezuelan government, as the new Foreign Minister.
Ventura replaces Vice President Epsy Campbell, who had resigned from the post.
“I will be a public servant who will project the values of our foreign policy, peace, democracy, human rights, the environment and disarmament, and will also address the imperative of having excellent foreign relationships,” Ventura said upon taking office.
The new Foreign Minister has stood out for his criticism of the government of Nicolás Maduro and was the author of a report on crimes against humanity in Venezuela that served as the basis for an accusation before the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Ventura says he will develop foreign policies focused on human rights, migration, foreign trade and the strengthening of the diplomatic career, as well as contingent issues such as the crises in Nicaragua and Venezuela.
He served as judge of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights from 2004 to 2015 and as Minister Counselor in Legal Affairs of the Embassy of Costa Rica in Washington.
President Carlos Alvarado also announced Tuesday the appointment of Juan Luis Bermúdez as Minister of Human Development and Social Inclusion, and Nancy Marín as Minister of Communication, following the resignation of the holders of those positions.
The former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Epsy Campbell, resigned her post on Dec. 11 in the midst of a controversy over the appointment of a director and a deputy foreign policy director who did not have the rank of ambassador, as required by law.
Campbell, the first Afro-descendant woman to be Foreign Minister of Costa Rica, remains as vice president of Alvarado’s government.
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