Caracas: Decision by UK Court on Venezuelan Gold Poses Major Risks for Investors
09:47 GMT 21.12.2021 (Updated: 09:59 GMT 21.12.2021)
BUENOS AIRES (Sputnik) - Venezuela has condemned the decision by the UK Supreme Court on Venezuelan gold, saying that the ruling creates serious risks for investors who have entrusted their funds to the British financial system, the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday.
"This decision violates the norms of Public International Law, the Venezuelan constitutional order, and British legislation, at the same time it represents serious risks for the investments that the international community has entrusted in the United Kingdom's financial system, since it resorts to fraud to illegally seize the resources entrusted to it", the ministry said in a statement.
According to the ministry, with its decision, the UK Supreme Court showed that it is not impartial and independent of the government.
Venezuela will continue to use all the resources at its disposal to protect international reserves, the ministry added.
On Monday, the UK Supreme Court sent the litigation over the Venezuelan gold reserves
held at the Bank of England back to the London Commercial Court after allowing "in part" self-proclaimed Venezualan President Juan Guaido's claim over the $1 billion worth of bullion.
The long-running legal battle for the gold began after Guaido declared himself interim president in the wake of public protests in Venezuela in January 2019. After that, the Bank of England refused to fulfill a request made by the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV) to have access to the gold to buy medicine and equipment to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Bank of England claimed that there was a lack of clarity as to who was governng Venezuela, so the BCV took it to trial before the London Commercial Court, which, in turn, ruled in July 2020 against the board appointed by incumbent Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.
The judge presiding over the case then said that since Guaido had been "unequivocally" recognised by the United Kingdom as the president of Venezuela Guaido's ad hoc administrative board had a right to the gold.
On 5 October, the Court of Appeals overturned that ruling and directed the high court to conduct a detailed factual inquiry to determine whether the British government recognises that Maduro does indeed continue to exercise de facto powers as head of state and government in Venezuela.