Dhaka: 7:55 PM, Thu, 24 May, 2018

Venezuelan opposition votes amid violence

Mukul : risingbd.com
Publish on: 2017-07-17 1:55:19 PM     ||     Updated: 2017-07-17 9:57:40 PM

International Desk: At least one person has reportedly been killed during violence in Venezuela during an unofficial referendum held by the opposition in protest against President Nicolas Maduro's plans to rewrite the constitution.

A 61-year-old woman was killed and four people were wounded by gunfire after government supporters on motorcycles swarmed an opposition polling site in a church in the neighbourhood of Catia, just northwest of Caracas, according to reports.

Carlos Ocariz, an opposition spokesman, said: "There was an incident in Catia a short while ago in which paramilitaries opened fire."

Local news media reported that pro-government armed groups, known as "colectivos," opened fire on the opposition supporters.

The reports said that up to 500 people had taken refuge in the church during the attack, including Catholic Cardinal Jorge Urosa.

In comments on Twitter, Henrique Capriles, Venezuela's opposition leader, accused President Nicolas Maduro and "his corrupt leadership" of sending "their paramilitaries" to attack Catia.

Sunday's plebiscite, organised by the opposition, had not been approved by electoral officials.

More than 7.1 million Venezuelans took part in the poll, the opposition said, falling short the 11 million they had hoped for.

Opposition voters look poised to reject the president's proposal to retool the 1999 constitution by electing a super-body known as the constituent assembly on July 30.

The opposition told supporters to boycott the July 30 poll, which they see as a power grab move by Maduro.

Source: Agencies

risingbd/July 17, 2017/Mukul