UN links Maduro to crimes against humanity

By AAP Newswire

Independent experts commissioned by the UN's top human rights body allege the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro committed crimes against humanity.

The experts issued a scathing, in-depth report on Wednesday that says the people responsible for crimes that include extrajudicial executions, enforced disappearances, arbitrary detentions and torture must be held to account, in part to ensure they do not happen again.

The report was commissioned last year by the Human Rights Council, which has the backing of the United Nations,

The findings, based on nearly 3000 cases that were investigated or examined, concluded that Maduro and his defence and interior ministers were aware of crimes committed by security forces and intelligence agencies.

The report further alleges that high-level authorities had power and oversight over the forces and agencies, making the top officials responsible.

The report appears likely to fan international and domestic criticism of Maduro's government, which has overseen a country in tatters with runaway inflation, a violent crackdown and an exodus of millions of Venezuelans who have fled to neighbouring countries to escape the turmoil since he took power in 2013.