[News] Here’s Your Guide to Understanding Protest Deaths in Venezuela
news at freedomarchives.org
Wed Apr 26 11:07:14 EDT 2017
Here’s Your Guide to Understanding Protest Deaths in Venezuela
April 25, 2017
Headlines about ongoing violence in Venezuela are practically
inescapable, with over two dozen people dead since opposition-led
protests aimed at toppling the government began in early April.
Right-wing opposition leaders have attempted to portray the deaths as
examples of state repression and evidence of the "dictatorship" that
they are aiming to topple. Mainstream media have by and large echoed
this version of events, using titles like “Venezuelan Regime Has Blood
On Its Hands” and “Venezuela's Tiananmen Moment."
Some outlets have even gone as far as claiming the elected government of
Nicolas Maduro as engaging in “a campaign of state genocide.”
The reality of the situation on the ground, however, demonstrates
something very different.
Of those killed thus far, three are attributed to state security forces,
while two of the dead are members of police themselves. The total number
of dead is significantly bolstered by the eight who were electrocuted as
they attempted to loot a bakery, while five of those killed were
expressly connected to opposition protests. On the other hand, 10 of the
deceased are attributed to right-wing violence.
In addition to the more than two dozen killed, 437 people have been
injured in the protests, Venezuelan Attorney General Luisa Ortega said.
Here’s a breakdown of those killed since the opposition protests began.
1. /Jairo Ortiz/: the 19-year-old student, was shot by transit police
Officer Rohenluis Leonel Mata in the state of Miranda. Venezuelan police
immediately detained Mata, who is set to face criminal charges.
2. /Daniel //Queliz/: the 19-year-old college student from Carabobo was
shot by police while participating in an opposition protest.
3. /Ricarda de Lourdes:/ the 83-year-old woman died at her home in
Caracas on April 10 from hydrocephalus. When her symptoms began flaring
earlier that day, she was unable to be transported to a nearby hospital
because opposition protesters blocked all of the neighborhood’s roads,
preventing ambulances from picking her up.
4. /Yey Amaro:/ 37-year-old police officer in the state of Lara, was hit
by a vehicle driven by opposition protesters on April 11 after trying to
mediate protests in his home state.
5. /Miguel //Colmenares//:/ the 36-year-old opposition supporter from
Lara died from multiple wounds received after the detonation of
explosive devices in Barquisimeto, Lara state.
6. /Gruseny////Canelon//:/ the 32-year-old opposition supporter from
Lara died of organ failure after being shot during an anti-government
demonstration. Fifteen members of the National Guard have been placed
under arrest in the incident.
7. /Oliver Villa:/ the 29-year-old digital marketing entrepreneur was
shot by unidentified assailants on motorbikes in Caracas after evading
an opposition barricade in the El Paraiso sector of Caracas.
8. /Brayan Principal:/ the 14-year-old resident of the Ali Primera
Socialist City was shot by opposition protesters after they toppled the
main gate of the commune.
9. /Carlos Moreno:/ the 17-year-old student was shot in the head while
in Caracas. Family members say he was not involved in the protest, and
it is suspected his murder was perpetrated by armed robbers who stole
10. /Niumar////Sanclemente//:/ the 28-year-old sergeant with the
National Guard was apparently killed by sniper fire in Los Teques, the
capital of the state of Merida.
11. /Paola Ramirez:/ the 23-year-old college student from Tachira was
shot while in the vicinity of a demonstration. A member of the
right-wing Vente Venezuela opposition group is under arrest for the murder.
12. /Kevin Leon:/ the 19-year-old bakery worker in the El Valle district
of Caracas, was shot by opposition protesters who were vandalizing his
13. /Ramon Martinez:/ the 28-year-old cook who worked in the same bakery
as Kevin Leon in the El Valle district of Caracas was shot by opposition
protesters as he tried to protect the store.
14. /Francisco Gonzalez:/ the 34-year-old died during the vandalization
of the El Valle bakery.
15-22. /Eight were electrocuted/ when they attempted to loot a bakery in
El Valle, Caracas. Names have not been released nor have the
circumstances of the electrocution been verified, though there is
speculation that the bakery had an electrified gate.
23. /Mervin //Guitan//:/ the 26-year-old who worked for a mayor's office
in Sucre was shot by unidentified gunmen during a protest.
24. /Alberto Rodriguez:/ the 16-year-old died from suffocation from tear
gas used in El Valle, Caracas.
25. /Almelina//Carrillo/: the 47-year-old was struck in the head with a
frozen water bottle thrown from a building while walking near a
pro-government march in Caracas on April 19 and died a few days later.
26. /Jesus Sulbaran/: the 41-year-old criminology student and an
official in the governor's office in Merida was killed while
participating in a pro-government demonstration, according to
27. /Renzo //Rodriguez/: the 54-year-old was killed in the state of
Barinas from a gunshot wound to his chest when he was in the vicinity of
the mayor's office of the municipality of Barinas.
28. /Orlando //Jhosep/: the 23-year-old died of a gunshot wound during a
protest in the city of El Tocuyo, Lara state.
29. /Daniel Infante/: the 25-year-old transportation worker was killed
while participating in a pro-government demonstration, according to
30. /Luis Marquez/: the 52-year-old was shot and killed in the capital
of the state of Merida while taking part in a pro-government demonstration.
31. /Efrain Sierra/: the 27-year-old lost his life after receiving a
bullet in the stomach on April 24 as he resisted the theft of his
motorcycle while passing through an opposition barricade.
Disturbingly, there are also other people whose murders during these
dates raise concerns about targeted assassinations and possible
/Esmin Ramirez:/ the Venezuelan trade unionist was killed Sunday in the
southeastern state of Bolivar after being kidnapped in an act that
people close to him claim was politically motivated. Ramirez, who was a
member of the Movement 21 labor syndicate in the state-run iron ore
producer Ferrominera and part of the PSUV political party in Cachamay,
was killed in El Rinconcito sector in Guayana City, a city along the
bank of the Orinoco River in Bolivar state.
/Jackeline Ortega:/ murdered in the greater Caracas area in Santa Lucia
del Tuy. Ortega was also a member of the PSUV as well as a leader in the
Local Committee on Supply and Production, known as CLAP, a
government-created alternative food distribution program.
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