Sign in / Join

Venezuela: decisive campaign week

Ⓒ AFP – Federico Parra – | Venezuelan opposition activist demonstrates on 10 July 2017 in Caracas

Supporters and opponents of the constituent assembly wanted by President Nicolas Maduro beat the campaign this week in Venezuela, where opponents feel they have been growing wings since the release of one of their emblematic leaders.

The anti-chavists (Hugo Chavez, president from 1999 to his death in 2013) began to gather on Monday morning to protest again against the election of a constituent assembly, scheduled for July 30, Draft a new Constitution to replace the 1999 Constitution.

The opposition is standing up against this project, which it describes as “fraud” orchestrated by the presidential camp to maintain a “dictatorship” in a country in full economic sinking ruined by the fall in oil prices of which it is a big producer .

The Catholic Church also rose to the niche, denouncing last week “the inscription in the Constitution of a military, socialist, Marxist and Communist dictatorship” and worrying about “a struggle between a government become a dictatorship and all A people demanding freedom “.

The opposition, for which the objective of the head of state through this Constituent Assembly is to cling to power, foresees a popular symbolic consultation on this subject next Sunday.

As a sign of protest, the Table for Democratic Unity (MUD), a coalition of anti-shock parties, also chose not to nominate candidates.

The election campaign is due to end on 27 July, three days before the election to elect the members of the Constituent Assembly.

Ⓒ AFP – JUAN BARRETO – | Venezuelan opposition activists demonstrate on 10 July 2017 in Caracas

Some 4,000 opponents of President Maduro are still on the streets on Sunday, on the 100th day of the wave of protests that has already killed 91 people and the release of one of their leaders, Leopoldo Lopez, 46, now assigned to Residence in Caracas.

He was sentenced in 2014 to almost 14 years of deprivation of liberty for “inciting violence” during demonstrations against Nicolas Maduro in February and May 2014 which resulted in the death of 43 people.

“One hundred days and I remain in rebellion against tyranny,” read on placards brandished by demonstrators gathered in the east of the capital and wearing t-shirts bearing the likeness of Mr. Lopez.

– Reduce the voltage –

Ⓒ AFP – CARLOS BECERRA – | Supporters of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro demonstrate on July 9, 2017 in Caracas

The opposition sees the release of Leopoldo Lopez as a “success” obtained through demonstrations, but assures that it will continue to “fight” for the release of the more than 400 “political prisoners” that it still according to Venezuela .

The anti-Chavez leaders called for blockades and demonstrations all week.

Mr. Lopez’s release comes at a time when the situation in Venezuela is very tense, with supporters of Mr Maduro having penetrated the only institution controlled by the opposition on Wednesday.

Some 300 elected officials and journalists were then held in the building for nine hours. Seven members were wounded.

On Sunday in the center of Caracas, thousands of supporters of Nicolas Maduro took part in the official opening of the campaign in favor of the constituent assembly.

“On the way to the Constituent Assembly, with the hope of building a solid peace together,” the head of state wrote on Facebook.

Ⓒ AFP – CARLOS BECERRA – | Supporters of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro demonstrate on July 9, 2017 in Caracas

According to analyst Luis Vicente Leon, the government seeks to reduce tension in the face of the risk of destabilization and fracture within the army, which can not be deprived because of its considerable weight in Venezuela.

He is also faced with critical voices within his camp, including Attorney General Luisa Ortega, formerly a chavist, who has now become a dissident against the regime, has become the mouthpiece, denouncing the abuses of the government and the military.

Threatened with a lawsuit that could lead to its dismissal, it should be fixed this week on its fate: the Supreme Court will decide whether it can be brought to justice for alleged faults.

Terms of service