Taken from today's Guardian:
On February 7 an English court granted an injunction to US multinational oil company ExxonMobil freezing the assets of the Venezuelan oil firm PDVSA in England and Wales. The order covered assets to the value of $12bn. The Venezuelan government was given no notice of the case nor any opportunity to be represented at the hearing. This week PDVSA will appeal against the decision in the high court.
ExxonMobil's action was in response to the policy of the Venezuelan government to take back majority control of its own oil resources. Unlike other international oil companies - 30 out of 32 contracts have been renegotiated, with amicable agreements and compensation terms reached with the Venezuelan government - ExxonMobil refused the terms offered.
We believe the court ruling contravenes the right of Venezuela's democratically elected government to exercise sovereignty over its natural resources. The nationalisation of the state oil company has allowed Venezuela to tackle a range of social inequalities, by taking back the oil wealth and redistributing it to benefit the Venezuelan people.
We urge the amicable settlement of this dispute through arbitration under the auspices of the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, a body of the World Bank, as sought by the Venezuelan government.
Diane Abbott M.P, Tony Benn, John Pilger, Bruce Kent, Prunella Scales, Caroline Lucas MEP, Gordon Hutchison, Secretary, Venezuela Information Centre (VIC), Brian Wilson, Chair, Scottish Venezuela Society, Ann Pettifor, Director, Advocacy International, Neil Lawson, Compass, Graeme Smith, General Secretary, STUC, Keith Sonnet, Deputy General Secretary, UNISON, Ken Loach, Colin Burgon M.P, Jon Cruddas M.P, Mike Hancock M.P, Adam Price M.P., Angus MacNeil M.P., Richard Harvey, David Hillman, Jon Trickett M.P, Jeremy Corbyn M.P, Victoria Brittain, Graham Goddard, Deputy General Secretary, UNITE Billy Hayes, General Secretary CWU, Rodney Bickerstaffe, Sue Branford, Chair, War on Want, Richard Gott, Doug Nicholls, National Secretary CYWU/UNITE, Derek Wall, Green Party, Cllr. Salma Yaqoob, Hazel Marsh, University of East Anglia, Andy Bain, President TSSA, Maggie Bowden, General Secretary, Liberation, Ruqayyah Collector, Black Students Officer, NUS, Marie Daley, UCU National Executive Committee, Michael Derham, Northumbria University, Bill Greenshields, Vice-President NUT, Chris Kitchen, General Secretary NUM, Matt Wrack, General Secretary FBU, Dr Mandy Turner, University of Bradford, Dr Kaveh Moussavi, University of Oxford, Paul Laverty, Gerry Doherty, General Secretary TSSA, Baljeet Ghale, President NUT (personal capacity), Joe Marino, General Secretary, BFAWU, Doreen Massey, Open University, Martin McIvor, Editor, Renewal, Gerry Morrissey, General Secreary, BECTU, Linda Newman, President UCU, Diana Raby, University of Liverpool, Mick Shaw, President, FBU
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Taken from today's Guardian: