The Venezuelan government, led by President Nicolas Maduro, has blamed “fascist groups” for the lives lost when an anti-government protest turned deadly in Caracas on February 12.
At least three people were killed during violence that broke out after a mainly peaceful rally. Two people died after gunmen on motorbikes opened fire. A third was killed in later clashes.
Student protests in Caracas and other cities have escalated into wider demonstrations against Maduro’s rule.
Opposition politicians, while condemning the violence, are calling for more demonstrations to demand change.
Economy in dire straits: a look at the numbers
One of the main criticisms of the government is mismanagement of the economy. Venezuela’s currency devaluation and its expanding money supply have pushed inflation up to a staggering 56 percent.
The Venezuelan economy’s dependence on crude oil exports has soared to more than 95 percent.
Furthermore, Transparency International rates Venezuela as one of the most corrupt countries in the world.
Maduro’s government blames “profit-hungry businessmen” for many of the problems – including food shortages that have left shoppers having to scour supermarkets to buy staples such as milk and toilet paper.
A dangerous place to live
There is also public anger about rising crime. There were more than 21,000 homicides in 2012, according to the Venezuela Violence Observatory – amongst the highest murder rates in the world.
Furthermore, many people do not believe that the current system can keep them safe; according to Transparency International, Venezuelans believe the most corrupt institution in the country is the police.
With crime soaring and the economy tanking – Venezuela’s twin problems, each feeding the other, look set to continue worsening unless at least one of them is brought under control.
- 1The nuclear waste site at the heart of Canada’s wildfires
- 2Brazil in crisis after leaked tape forces out interim President’s ally
- 3EgyptAir crash: suggestions of explosion on board ‘mere assumptions’ – official
- 4A handshake, a kiss and a hug at historic meeting of Catholic and Muslim leaders
- 5French union blockades spark petrol shortages
- 1EgyptAir crash: airline says Flight MS804 wreckage found
- 2Venezuela economy fractured with shortages of essentials across the country
- 3The nuclear waste site at the heart of Canada’s wildfires
- 4Crimean Tatars look for Eurovision boost on day of national tragedy
- 5Kazakh police break up anti-government protests
Latest world news
Death penalty sought for South Carolina church shooter
More fuel frustration as French pickets refuse to back down
Eurozone ministers agree “breakthrough” deal with Greece
Turkey warns EU migrant deal could collapse if visa-waiver isn’t speeded up
Kurdish-led militias launch offensive against ISIL-held Raqqa
Wires > News
- 07:01 CET Afghan Taliban appoint new leader after Mansour’s death
- 05:54 CET Japan PM to discuss Okinawa crime with Obama ahead of G7
- 05:50 CET Mexico and EU to start talks on updating trade deal in June
- 05:04 CET Childhood goes up in smoke for Indonesian tobacco farm workers
- 02:51 CET After benefits of cheap oil, India counts cost of reduced Gulf…
- 00:50 CET Pakistan can’t confirm Taliban leader is dead, criticises …
- 23:17 CET Daughter of detained Hong Kong bookseller appeals for U.S. help
- 23:01 CET Brazil’s Temer seeks constitutional change to curb public spending