Wednesday night, Venezuela’s government unleashed a full out assault on unarmed student protesters after a week of demonstrations that have left six dead and at least 100 injured.
Information is slowly trickling out of Venezuela after a complete media black-out was put in place by the Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro.
— Gian Simone (@gian_ballyouup) February 19, 2014
The latest victim of the violence was 22-year-old college student and model Genesis Carmona, who was shot in the head at a peaceful protest on Tuesday in the central city of Valencia. She died a short time later in a clinic.
“How long are we going to live like this? How long do we have to tolerate this pressure, with them killing us?” a relative told Reuters.
Demonstrators are protesting opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez’s detention as well as the rampant crime, shortages of consumer goods and inflation rate of more than 50 percent that has made life difficult for many in the South American country of nearly 30 million people.
The president said he was prepared to declare a “state of exception,” a form of martial law in Tachira, an opposition stronghold where there have been fierce clashes between security forces and opposition protesters. “If I have to decree a state of exception for Tachira and send in the tanks, I am ready to do it,” he warned.
According to Caracas Chronicles.com:
Alongside them, the government backed colectivos (basically paramilitary gangs on motorbikes, a tropical basij) shoot at people with live ammo.
Below we see what appear to be National Guard troops shooting a civilian in Avenida Panteon, there are conflicting reports about whether he survived:
— Douglas & Genessis (@DougGene) February 20, 2014
Below you can see the arrival of the colectivos at Altamira square Wednesday night:
From La Candelaria:
CNN’s camera’s were taken away at gunpoint earlier today:
Journalist on the ground are sharing video of the government crackdown:
A Venezuelan National Guard member was captured on video breaking a car’s windows on Wednesday:
Here are a few tweets coming out of Venezuela tonight:
— Jiap (@jiaplocox) February 20, 2014
— -Jose Rodriguez (@Jose_Rod954) February 20, 2014
— PzFeed Top News (@PzFeed) February 20, 2014
— Julie (@MsIntervention) February 20, 2014
Altamira 19F 6:45pm pic.twitter.com/KwSAOvAI2M
— Anaís De Boricón (@anaisdeboricon) February 19, 2014
The world has to know about this: Today 20th of February students are being killed in Venezuela. Spread the word. pic.twitter.com/iZ3XO6JkHS
— K. (@kikeurbina) February 20, 2014
— YoungConservative (@steve0423) February 19, 2014
— Lorena (@Lorena3000) February 20, 2014
— Elizabeth Peña (@yorianelis03) February 20, 2014
Here is a summary of the current situation in Venezuela: