Venezuela opposition vows fresh protests despite deaths
20 April 2017, 07:21 | Erica Roy
Tens of thousands of protesters attended the march in Caracas where one teenager was killed
The other two people killed amid Wednesday's demonstrations included a teenager who was heading to a soccer match with friends.
Non-government rights group Provea said the woman died "in the context of the demonstrations".
Demonstrators in downtown Caracas were dispersed by police using tear gas during the largest in a wave of protests this month by opponents of President Nicolas Maduro.
The sergeant was the third person reported killed in the protests over the past day and the eighth person to die in demonstrations over the past several weeks.
In a third death, Venezuelan National Guard Sgt. Niumar Jose San Clemente Barrios was fatally shot Wednesday night, said the public prosecutor's office and Venezuela's top human rights official, ombudsman Tarek William Saab. Previous marches attempting the same route have been met with security vehicles, tear gas and rubber bullets fired by riot police officers. "When they took the young man to (a nearby clinic), the government supporters left".
Then, on March 29, the Venezuelan Supreme Court dissolved the Parliament, transferring all legislative powers to itself.
The opposition counters that Maduro, deeply unpopular as Venezuelans grapple with triple-digit inflation and shortages of food and basic consumer goods, is seeking to stay in power indefinitely by barring opposition leaders from office and quashing independent state institutions.
The government has delayed local and state elections and blocked attempts by the Opposition to oust the President through a referendum.
Opposition marchers included Liliana Machuca, who earns about $20 a month holding two jobs teaching literature. A group of youths with their faces covered tore down street signs and billboards for makeshift barricades.
Liliana Machuca, a teacher in Caracas told the AP she believes protesting is her only option after all the "abuses" she says have been committed by the government.
'We're scared but we've got to do this, ' said Carmen Medina, a 55-year-old social worker in the middle-class district of El Paraiso, where demonstrators were beginning to gather.
At least three people have been killed in Venezuela in protests against the government of President Nicolas Maduro.
A demonstrator throws back a tear gas canister during clashes with security forces at a protest in Caracas.
A pro-government politician and reservist, Diosdado Cabello, said on his television show that anti-Maduro activists had also "murdered" a soldier in San Antonio de los Altos, a town just south of Caracas, late Wednesday. He also said authorities in recent hours had rounded up unnamed members of an underground cell of conspirators at Caracas hotels, including some who were allegedly planning to stir up violence at the march. The court partly backtracked after an worldwide outcry, but the tension only increased when authorities slapped a political ban on opposition leader Henrique Capriles on April 7, 2017.
The remarks come a day after the U.S. State Department issued a statement warning the South American country, "Those responsible for the criminal repression of peaceful democratic activity. and for gross violations of human rights, will be held individually accountable for their actions by. the global community".
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson tells reporters at the State Department that the U.S.is "concerned that the government of Maduro is violating its own constitution and is not allowing the opposition to have their voices heard".
General Motors says it has halted operations in Venezuela after authorities seized a factory.
The president in turn has urged his supporters, the military and civilian militias to defend the socialist "Bolivarian revolution" launched by his predecessor Hugo Chavez in 1999.
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