Clashes erupt between police and protestors in Caracas

Anna Polga fled political persecution in Caracas and is now a permanent resident in Canada.

Clashes erupt between police and protestors in Caracas

The protests were triggered by the Supreme Court's decision to gut the opposition-controlled legislature of its last vestiges of power, a move that was later reversed amid widespread global condemnation and even dissent within Maduro's normally disciplined socialist leadership. We'll see you on the streets of Venezuela @nicolasmaduro.

While the government accused Capriles, a two-time presidential candidate who narrowly lost the election to Maduro in 2013, of breaking contracting laws and improper management of donations, the opposition says the move is meant to crack down on the opposition ahead of new elections in 2018.

In a comment on social media, Capriles denied the charges and said the disqualification was illegal and politically motivated.

Capriles was also one of the leaders of mass demonstrations earlier this week against Maduro that led to clashes with police.

Others at the rally held pictures of Capriles. Over the last few days, authorities accused the opposition - and Capriles in particular - of fomenting violence and bloodshed by leading increasingly intense protests against Maduro.

"People are exhausted of so much corruption, hunger and poverty", said Vanessa Garcia, 37, an optometry student.

In San Cristobal in the west, masked gunmen reportedly set off explosions, causing demonstrators to flee.

In addition to the slain youth, dozens of people were injured Thursday, including at least 19 who required medical attention, mostly for breathing problems after inhaling tear gas.

Despite the fact that the court's ruling has been canceled, serious tensions remain. The ban, which was imposed [VOA report] for alleged "administrative irregularities" during his time as the governor of Miranda and misuse of donations from the British and Polish embassies, would bar Capriles from opposing current President Nicolas Maduro [Twitter profile] in the upcoming presidential election.

The court later reversed the rulings after an global outcry, but kept in place other measures limiting the assembly's powers.

The court reversed its decision three days later after a series of violent protests.

The opposition then came up with the idea of seeking the dismissal of the Supreme Court's justices. But the ombudsman's office said this was not possible.

Capriles can appeal against his sanction within two weeks to the comptroller and within six months to the Supreme Court.

"I am eager for elections to be convened for governors and mayors" to teach the opposition a lesson, Maduro said yesterday on his weekly television program.

The collapse in prices for Venezuela's crucial oil exports has sapped the country's revenues.

Capriles's allies vowed to push ahead with further protests planned for Saturday. He says it is due to a capitalist conspiracy.

The South American country is suffering from triple-digit inflation, shortages of basic foods and medicines, and one of the world's highest murder rates. Government workers will be off, on Maduro's order.

Latest News