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Tensions rise in Venezuela as pro and anti-government activists take to streets of Caracas

Thousands of pro and anti-government protesters took part in rival demonstrations in Venezuela’s capital Caracas on Saturday.

Anti-government protesters say they are angry at high levels of crime and the poor state of the economy.

They were also remembering two students killed during a demonstration by an unknown gunman. Both sides accuse the other of being behind the shootings.

The march started peacefully but there were clashes between activists and police as night fell.

In a live TV speech, President Maduro warned the country’s elite that if it tried to topple the democratically elected government, it could expect an armed response.

Maduro has blamed the United States for backing the opposition and being behind a coup plot.

He called on his supporters to take to the streets to march for peace.

“Get out Yankees. Long live Chavez, long live Maduro. Get out saboteurs. We want peace in our homeland, Venezuela,” said one government supporter.

More marches are expected to take place throughout Sunday.

Copyright © 2014 euronews

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