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Students and police clash in Venezuela protests

Published time: February 28, 2014 09:23
Edited time: March 05, 2014 07:37

Opposition students attend a rally against violence in Caracas February 27, 2014. (Reuters/Tomas Bravo)

Student protesters have clashed with police in Caracas, prompting officers to use tear gas to break up the crowds. It comes after almost two weeks of massive street demonstrations that the government has condemned as an attempted coup d’état.

Students marched through the Venezuelan capital on Thursday, demanding the release of their peers who were detained during the last two weeks of protests. The demonstration descended into violence when a group of masked protesters attempted to block a road in central Caracas. The police used tear gas to break up the crowd, while demonstrators pelted officers with stones.

Opponents of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro clash with riot police during an anti-government protest in Caracas on February 27, 2014. (AFP Photo/Leo Ramirez)

“[President] Maduro, tell us when and where you are going to release the prisoners. Tell us when there will be justice for our dead,” the head of the student protest movement, Juan Requesens, addressed protesters on Thursday.

Over 50 people have died in the mass protests that have gripped Venezuela over the last couple of weeks, according to government figures. President Nicolas Maduro decried the unrest as an attempt at a coup d’état orchestrated by fascist elements in the Venezuelan opposition.

An anti-government demonstrator throws a teargas canister after it was thrown at protesters by the police, during clashes at Altamira square in Caracas February 27, 2014. (Reuters/Tomas Bravo)

“There will be no coup d'etat in Venezuela; you can rest assured. Democracy will continue, and the revolution will continue,” Maduro said on national television on Wednesday. The head of the Venezuelan government has also pointed the figure at President Barack Obama for “financing, promoting and defending members of the opposition that promote violence against our country.”

Elsewhere in Caracas on Thursday government supporters gathered to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Caracazo – violent protests against economic measures imposed in 1989 that left hundreds of people dead. The historical event is widely believed to have prompted the civic-military rebellion led by Hugo Chavez that happened three years later in 1992.

Supporters of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro take part in a ceremony commemorating the 25th anniversary of a deadly popular revolt, also known as El Caracazo, in Caracas, on February 27, 2014. (AFP Photo/Leo Ramirez)

The latest wave of violence in Venezuela comes on the heels of the arrest of opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez who handed himself into police custody last week. The Harvard-educated opposition figure is facing charges of inciting violent protests which carries a potential jail sentence of ten years.

Lopez was initially accused of murder, but his lawyers say these charges have been dropped by prosecutors.

"I said, 'Send him to jail,' and that's what happened and that's what will happen with all of the fascists. I won't allow him to challenge the people of Venezuela, the constitution,”
said Maduro shortly after Lopez’s arrest.

Following the arrest Maduro announced the expulsion of three US diplomats from Venezuela whom he accused of a “fascist” conspiracy to oust the socialist government.

In response, Washington gave three Venezuelan diplomats 48 hours to leave the United States and denied the US had anything to do with the unrest.

Comments (11)

 

rdider 01.03.2014 15:22

BRICSIAN 01.03.2014 03:48

Wayne Madsen, ex US naval officer has written an article entitled - "The Massive PSYOP employed against Ukraine by GCHQ and NSA" in strategic-culture.or g.

This information is for all those who like me are sick of the paid activists posting pro-western propaganda.

  


Using a known conspiracy theorist as a credible source of opinion? Wayne Madsen is known for his quack tabloid journalism with self cited sources.

 

rdider 01.03.2014 15:10

[quote name='Ed Camilo' time='01.03.2014 05:51']President Maduro needs to avoid the mistakes committed by the Ukrainian president.. . Those rioters are not students ; they are well fed cia paid mercenaries....[/quo te]

You mean the mistake of stealing 39 billion in aid from his own Ukraine treasuries? I'm betting Maduro has a nice mansion in Columbia or Miami right now. How do you sleep at night when all these CIA boogeymen are coming after you? Hold on tight to your Fidel issued security blanket.

 

rdider 01.03.2014 15:01

snowonweb 28.02.2014 23:23

OBAMA is financing this riot as well as whatever is going on in Ukraine. ..That's cool, if USA can't start war with Iran because Russia is in the way, the least they can do is start a turmoil in Ukraine. If USA can't get South American resources because Venezuela leads the movement...

  


You don't know Obama well, he's pulled out the US in most of the foreign areas and cut defense budget. US has plenty of resources and oil reserves to suffice.
Ukraine is in their own mess, Yanukovich stealing 39 billion from his own treasury.

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