April 23, 2017

Venezuela Guard deploys tear gas on march

21 April 2017, 03:25 | Darnell Patrick

His death marked the sixth fatality in nearly three weeks of escalating protests.

The elections council, which is sympathetic to the government, has delayed votes for state governors that were supposed to take place previous year.

But the throngs of protesters weren't well-payed USA plants but Venezuelan citizens braving tear gas to protest a government that has overseen hyperinflation, food and medicine scarcity, years of recession, continually delayed elections, alleged vice presidential drug trafficking, and a president who seems unwilling or unable to respond to any of the above.

The government was also widely condemned for disqualifying opposition leader Henrique Capriles from running for office for 15 years, meaning that he will be ineligible to challenge Maduro for the presidency in elections due to be held next year. "We are concerned about that situation. We're watching it closely and working with others, particularly through the OAS [Organization of American States] to communicate those concerns to them", Tillerson added in a brief press conference. "When I go after criminals, I get them and I will capture all of these criminals who are getting their orders from the right-wingers".

"We have to end this dictatorship". "This cheating government has betrayed us, the people, the children in the family". Maduro said the hemispheric organization was persecuting his country.

Citing witnesses in Caracas, Reuters reports that Carlos Moreno, a teenage student who had not planned to join the demonstration, was shot in the head after "government supporters approached an opposition gathering and fired shots". He made the comment before thousands of rifle-carrying members of the pro-Maduro "Bolivarian militia", who cheered with fists raised at a rally outside the presidential palace.

According to the Venezuelan leader, the USA government wrote up a coup scenario for opposition leader Julio Borges. The court - stacked with appointees of Maduro and Chavez - reversed its position in the wake of domestic and global outcries about an attempted power grab.

At least three people were killed Wednesday when violent clashes marred what opposition leaders in Venezuela had billed as a massive march on a national holiday commemorating the start of the troubled country's independence struggle against Spain.

'This is going to escalate and force Maduro, and his regime, to hold free and democratic elections'.

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Unidad Venezuela, a coalition of opposition parties, also organized marches in each of the country's 24 states. In addition, a demonstration took place at the Venezuelan embassy in Washington. By doing away with the opposition-controlled legislative branch, the move effectively meant the remaining two branches of Venezuelan government were controlled by the ruling United Socialist Party.

Thousands of Venezuelans took to the streets in protest again today.

Venezuela's food shortages have become extremely severe in the last couple of years.

At least six Venezuelans have already died this month in what have been the biggest anti-government protests since 2014.

The statement, by spokesman Mark Toner, urged nonviolent demonstrations.

"So everything is set for their to be violence today", he said.

Maduro, for his part, has rejected the unrest as manufactured by forces outside Venezuela's borders.

"I came to march because I believe in this country and I want our youth to have a future; Venezuelans want to stay", said Mercedes ExpĆ³sito, 53, who told NBC News that people say they want to stay in the marches though they're "choking from the tear gas; they will wait until the government runs out of its bombs".

In response to Wednesday's massive protests, which had always been in the works, Al Jazeera reports Maduro ordered the Venezuelan military to march in Caracas in "defense of morality" and "in repudiation of the traitors of the country".

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