Speaking to The Backbencher longstanding human rights activist Peter Tatchell hit out against the ‘love which many on the left have with Venezuela’. He noted that ‘this regime is maintaining itself in power with tear gas and even bullets’ despite which ‘many Western leftists are still singing its praises’. He added that sympathy with Venezuela on the Western hard-left exists despite the fact that ‘many on the Venezuelan left are also disenchanted with the regime’.
Tatchell went on to state that ‘for this massively oil rich state to have millions of people who are malnourished, who can’t get medicine, who are dying from lack of medical care, it’s absolutely outrageous’. As a result he claimed Venezuela has a ‘right-wing anti-working-class Government which is using the cloak of socialism to justify its existence’ adding that ‘in all the basic tenants of economic and political policy the Venezuelan regime now fits a classic right-wing template’.
The list of figures on the British hard-left who have at some stage praised or associated themselves with Venezuela’s authoritarian government is extensive, and includes the likes of Jeremy Corbyn, Diane Abbott, Seamus Milne and Owen Jones.
The clip from our interview with Peter Tatchell can be viewed below. The full (1 hour 20 minute) interview can also be found here.