United States official expresses concern over Venezuela


In a televised speech Tuesday night, Maduro ordered security forces to go on high alert, alleging - as he often does - that the opposition is colluding with the United States to overthrow him. GM called it an illegal judicial seizure of its assets.

The Detroit automaker said in a statement Thursday that other assets such as vehicles were taken from the plant, causing irreparable damage to the company.

The court partly backtracked after an global outcry, but tension only increased when authorities slapped a political ban on opposition leader Henrique Capriles on April 7.

The opposition says Maduro made it clear to the world he was a dictator when the Supreme Court in late March assumed the functions of the opposition-led Congress.

Opponents of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro took to the streets Wednesday in Venezuela for a protest against the embattled socialist leader. Two demonstrators were killed, as a political crisis in this failing state deepens. There was no immediate reaction from Washington.

The seizure came as tens of thousands of protesters demanded elections and denounced what they consider to be an increasingly dictatorial government.

Across the country, the clashes have been intense.

The Associated Press reported the prosecutor's office is investigating the circumstances of Carlos Moreno's shooting, with one account saying the boy was hit by gunfire from pro-government militia and another contending he was attacked while walking home after a soccer match.

The opposition's mobilization comes amid weeks of protests as Maduro faces increasing scrutiny overseas and within his own government after the country's top court last month tried to grab power from the opposition-controlled congress.

The Opposition called for renewed nationwide protests to pressure the government of to hold elections and improve a collapsing economy. Mr.

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Julio Borges, president of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, on Tuesday asked the country's armed forces, which have tacitly supported the government, to guarantee peaceful protest.

That move was later reversed, but it had the added effect of energising Venezuela's fractious opposition, which had been struggling to channel growing anger against Maduro over widespread food shortages and triple-digit inflation. In the tweet, Trump called for Venezuela to release its political prisoners.

Government supporters held opposing demonstration as backers dressed in red t-shirts and carried posters of popular late President Hugo Chavez, who governed from 1999 to 2013.

But the government hasn't backed down.

Opposition demonstrators clash with riot police officers during a protest against the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in the capital, Caracas.

"This is like a chess game and each side is moving whatever pieces they can. we'll see who tires out first", she said.

Venezuela is reeling under political turmoil fuelled by an economic crisis due to falling oil prices, and President Nicolas Maduro's attempts to gag the Opposition.

As tensions have mounted, the government has used its almost-complete control of Venezuela's institutions to pursue its opponents. Six people have died and countless others, many journalists, have been injured.

He has also warned that an opposition government would slash social benefits like healthcare for the poor and subsidized food.

"We are concerned that the government of Maduro is violating its own constitution and is not allowing the opposition to have their voices heard, nor allowing them to organize in a way that expresses the views of the Venezuelan people", U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Wednesday at the State Department.

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