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Big event for Saturday

The venezuelan opposition promises to deliver Saturday its “largest demonstration of force” since the beginning of the wave of protests, at the beginning of April, requesting the departure of the socialist president Nicolas Maduro.

According to the latest balance sheet of the parquet, on Friday, the incidents that surround these gatherings almost daily were 47 dead, and now exceeds 43 deaths recorded during the previous large series of parades anti-Maduro, which occurred between February and may 2014.

The protests escalate most of the time in clashes with the forces of the order, where the projectiles of all kinds and Molotov cocktails to each respond with tear gas, rubber bullets, and water cannons of the other. The shots are sometimes real, as in many of these 47 deaths, for which officials have been arrested. This was compounded by the looting and the violence exercised by the “colectivos”, of groups of civilians armed by the government, provides the opposition.

50th day of event

On the occasion of this 50th day of protest since the 1st of April, the antichavistes (the name of the deceased ex-president Hugo Chávez, 1999-2013) intend to mark the spirits.

“For this 50th day of resistance, we will organize the largest demonstration of force in this period”, said Juan Andrés Mejia, one of the young mps who directs the events. The objective will be to “demonstrate to those who think they have done to us back, that we are more active than ever, that the people are more involved in favour of the change,” he added at a press conference.

Since the beginning of the market anti-Maduro, there are hundreds of injured and about 2,200 people arrested, according to the NGO Foro Penal. At least 159 of these civilians were tried and imprisoned by military courts. The opponents of Maduro denounced a “savage repression” of the socialist government, while the power of accusing the opposition of fomenting “terrorism” to a military coup supported by the United States.

“Violence and death”

The leader of the venezuelan opposition Henrique Capriles, who has accused Thursday the authorities to prevent her from leaving the country by “removing” his passport, announced that one of its lawyers was handed over on Friday in New York a report on the crisis in the south american country, the High commissioner of the UN for Human rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein. Henrique Capriles, former presidential candidate, he had lost little against the head of the current State, had to travel to the United States.

In Venezuela, the situation is particularly tense in the State of Tachira (west), on the border of Colombia. After a series of lootings and attacks against installations of the police and the army, the president has deployed 2600 military.

According to analysts, the challenge of the opposition will be to remain in the street peacefully, after a month and a half of events almost interrupted. “The success of a protest movement depends on the number and duration”, says the analyst Luis Vicente Leon, who warns that if the parades take a violent turn “have less impact”.

70% want the departure of Maduro

Seven Venezuelans out of ten want the departure of president Maduro, according to the polls, while a deep economic and social crisis is fuelling popular anger. This oil country, ruined by the fall in the price of crude oil, has been hit by serious shortages of food and medicines. Inflation is the highest in the world, and crime is uncontrollable.

The opposition demands early general election and rejects the decision of the head of State to convene a constituent assembly to reform the Constitution, dating back to 1999, suggesting that it is a maneuver to postpone the presidential elections planned for the end of 2018 and cling to power.

The attorney general of Venezuela, Luisa Ortega, the only dissenting voice within the president’s camp, has estimated that this initiative by the president would only worsen the crisis, according to a letter sent to the government and broadcast by the press. Friday, during a public meeting, the head of State insisted on the fact that the constituent assembly was “the path to peace, dialogue and consensus,” while the opposition was not proposing that “violence and death”. (afp/nxp)

Created: 20.05.2017, 04h42

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