[News] Protests, Disturbances, and Violence Continue in Venezuela, General Strike a “Failure”

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Tue Apr 16 17:54:02 EDT 2013

  Protests, Disturbances, and Violence Continue in Venezuela, General
  Strike a “Failure”

Merida, April 16^th 2013

This afternoon president Maduro said the opposition’s call for a general 
strike today had “failed”. He also blamed the losing candidate in 
Sunday’s elections, Henrique Capriles, for the seven deaths last night.

Maduro said last night’s violence was part of a plan “to take Venezuela 
off the road of democracy”, and called on the people to be peaceful and 
not “fall for provocations”.

He also declared “the coup d’état defeated”, and inaugurated a health 
centre in Miranda state. However he said it seemed the “destabilisations 
will continue”. Though there has been no direct attempt to overthrow the 
government, some government authorities have referred to the 
opposition’s refusal to recognise the election results as a “coup” or 
part of an attempt to bring about a coup.

President of the National Electoral Council (CNE) Tibisay Lucena said 
yesterday that the electoral system functioned “perfectly” on Sunday. 
She urged Henrique Capriles, who has not recognised the results, to use 
legal methods to present his complaints. 54% of the votes were audited 
on Sunday in the presence of booth witnesses from both political 
parties, and no problems were found, but opposition protestors are 
demanding that 100% of the votes be recounted.

Telesur reports that according to CNE norms, the opposition have “twenty 
[working] days to contest the results, they can do it through the 
Supreme Court, or the CNE, but they should formalise it, and not do it 
through the media”.

“Majority is majority, and should be respected under a democracy, they 
shouldn’t seek ambushes and invent things in order to make popular 
sovereignty vulnerable... that has just one name, “coup-ism” 
[/golpismo/],” Maduro said yesterday.

*Monday’s aggressions*

Last night seven people were killed as a result of opposition violence; 
two in Caracas, three in Ojeda, Zulia, one in Cumana, and one person in 
San Cristobal.

The opposition set fire to 18 Central Diagnostic Centres (CDIs – part of 
the Barrio Adentro health mission), and 3 subsidised food markets 
(Mercals). They also attacked the director of the CNE, Tibisay Lucena’s 
house, and the Telesur and VTV offices.

There are also unconfirmed reports of four attacks on housing mission 
buildings in Miranda, with seven people killed and ten injured.

The governor of Carabobo state, Francisco Ameliach, reported that 8 CDIs 
were “besieged” and Cuban doctors were attacked in his state. He said 64 
people were detained inside the CDI, and “should go to jail, because 
we’re not going to tolerate a coup d’état here”.

In Merida, around 700 mostly young opposition students protested outside 
the CNE, as well as in four other places in the city. 
Venezuelanalysis.com observed that police presence was light, and most 
police unarmed.  Many of the students armed themselves with rocks and 
glass bottles however, as though hoping something would happen. There 
were similar such protests outside most of the country’s main CNE 

Many people have posted photos 
around social networks, claiming they are of the CNE disposing of 
Sunday’s ballot boxes, though they are in fact of the CNE disposing of 
2010 voting boxes, as the law requires. Media like La Patilla and RCTV 
have also used the photos.

Further, pundit Nelson Bocaranda tweeted that the “CDI in La Paz, Gallo 
Verde, Maracaibo is hiding some electoral boxes and the Cubans there 
won’t allow them to be removed”. Opposition television station 
Globovision has been arguing that “if they don’t want to count the 
votes, they must have something to hide”.

Capriles called for marches around the country to each state’s head CNE 
office for today, and for a large march lead by him tomorrow to the 
headquarters of the CNE in Caracas.

President of the National Assembly, Diosdado Cabello, reported through 
Twitter that he will propose an investigation to the assembly against 
Capriles for the acts of violence. Luisa Ortega said the public 
prosecutor’s office will investigate the seven confirmed deaths.

Further, the suspension of the right to carry arms in place during the 
election, as is the custom, has been extended to this Saturday 6.00pm, 
following last night’s violence.

State, municipal, and national police are also confined to barracks 
until Saturday. Police need permission from  the National Bolivarian 
Armed Forces strategic operational command to intervene or act on any of 
the violence taking place.

Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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