Attack on Venezuelan Parliament leaves at least two seriously injured
A violent group stormed the National Assembly building in Caracas, Venezuela, assaulting opposition MPs holding a special session in commemoration of Independence Day.
A group of the Chavista party yesterday stormed the National Assembly, during the session held by the body – of opposition majority - in commemoration of the 206 years of independence of the Caribbean country.
With blunt objects and homemade explosives, the group bullied lawmakers violently, resulting in five lawmakers injured, two of them seriously.
According to Hernán Alemán’s post on his Twitter account, his colleagues Américo De Grazia and Alejandro Armas were savagely beaten with a blunt object in the head. After falling to the ground, he continued to be beaten with kicks that resulted in several fractures of ribs.
Among the other wounded were the parliamentarians Nora Bracho, Armando Armas, Luis Carlos Padilla and Jose Regnault.
"Dozens of people, some hooded, entered with sticks and tubes, dressed in red, in the gardens of the Legislative Palace and detonated rockets of fireworks, unleashing the chaos," an AFP agency team told the media 20 Minutos.
Members of the opposition Mesa de la Unidad Democrática (MUD), reported that the group gathered outside the building around noon, trying to access for more than six hours. Jose Manuel Olivares, deputy opposition, published in his Twitter account the images where they could observe the "paramilitary groups" entering violently into the parliament. In the same way, the deputies denounced that the head of the detachment of the National Guard of the Legislative Palace authorized the entrance of the violent group, as reported the newspaper El Nuevo Herald.
The behavior of the security forces in the face of Chavista armed violence is broadly comparable with their demonstrated capacity to violently repress other manifestations.
The aggressions were not limited to the opposition deputies. Several international media reported that they had been targeted, and Francisco Urreiztieta, a reporter for Univision, said individuals who identified themselves as “intelligence” of the collective groups, attempted to capture them by force.
President Nicolas Maduro condemned the incident during a military parade commemorating the anniversary of independence, claiming that the events were "strange, like everything surrounding the opposition." Likewise, the president said, "I accept no violence from anyone" and requested that the incident be investigated.
In the face of violent images and denunciations of several international media, the four founding countries of Mercosur published a statement expressing their "most categorical rejection" of the attack on the Venezuelan National Assembly, according to Infobae. The President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, the United States Department of State, the Chancellery of Santiago de Chile, as well as the presidents of Colombia, Peru and Spain joined in the sentiment. International voices agreed that the country needs an urgent exit from the crisis it faces.