Venezuela lives the prelude to a formal self-coup
During yesterday's afternoon, a helicopter of the scientific police flew over the Venezuelan capital, releasing two explosive devices on the Supreme Court, while armed groups of the government kidnapped opposition officials in the building of the National Assembly.
After more than 80 days of constant demonstrations in the street against the regime of Nicolás Maduro, the president seems to have orchestrated yesterday a movement of unstructured destabilization, whose events still do not convince the Venezuelan people.
The situation began to escalate at the moment when Nicolás Maduro declared at 2 pm, in the event "Meeting of Constituents" in the Poliedro de Caracas, that "if the Bolivarian Revolution were destroyed, we would go to combat, and which was not possible with votes, we would do with the arms".
Maduro's statements were framed in his campaign by the Constituent Assembly that seeks to modify the Constitution inherited from Chavez, and has fueled public disapproval, keeping the opposition firm in the streets.
Maduro assured that the elections for the Constituent Assembly would be carried out "in any scenario", on Sunday July 30. For its part, the opposition has called for ignorance of the government and civil "peaceful" disobedience, activating article 350 of the current Constitution.
In response to the president's statements, opposition leaders such as the National Assembly president, Julio Borges and Miranda’s state governor Henrique Capriles qualified Maduro's words as "serious", asserting that it would be a "declaration of war against the Venezuelans."
The words of the president of the National Assembly were prior to the beginning of a session in the body, which aimed to discuss "the defense of popular sovereignty and protection of the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, framed in the application of its articles 333 and 350", as you could read in its Twitter account.
Article 333: This Constitution will not lose its validity if it is no longer observed by act of force or because it is repealed by any means other than that provided for in it. In such an eventuality, every citizen invested or citizen invested or not of authority, will have the duty to collaborate in the restoration of its effective validity.
Article 350: The Venezuelan people, faithful to their republican tradition, in their fight for independence, peace and freedom, will not know any regime, legislation or authority that violates democratic values, principles and guarantees or impairs human rights.
The agreement on the defense of popular sovereignty was approved unanimously.
But at 5:30 PM an irregular situation was reported on the outskirts of the National Assembly, when a Command of the Bolivarian National Guard tried to enter the Federal Legislative Palace with boxes identified with the National Electoral Council seal.
Half an hour later, hordes of supporters of Chavism attempted to violently enter the Legislative Federal Palace, blocking entrances and firing 10 explosive devices - mortar rockets - inside the facility.
The situation went out of hand, opting for clashes between the deputies of the Assembly and the Armed Forces, when the deputies demanded to know the contents of the boxes that they intended to introduce into the building.
In the meantime, the Chavist paramilitaries took to the vicinity of the building, "kidnapping" the officials inside the building for more than four hours.
As reported by the media El Nacional, "the deputies Delsa Solórzano and Olivia Lozano, in addition to the parliamentarian Winston Flores, were taken out by force and beaten by the troops with their helmets, when they stopped the entrance of the electoral machines to the Parliament without prior authorization".
Only one hour after the events in the National Assembly, citizens reported through the social networks the irregular flight of a helicopter of the investigation police (CICPC) above the Supreme Court’s headquarters, where detonations were heard.
An inspector from the Special Actions Brigade (BAE) of the CICPC, who identified himself in his own social networks as Óscar Pérez, published a video on Instagram in which he claimed to speak "on behalf of the State. We are a coalition between military, police and civilian officials, in search of balance and against this transitional and criminal government", also demanding the resignation of Nicolás Maduro and the civil ignorance of the government, urging citizens to" go out into the streets in Caracas to Fort Tiuna and in the interior of the country to each military base", to achieve and “return the democratic order ".
The independent information platform Runrunes reported that unofficially, "it was learned that the officer stole the helicopter, fired firearms at the Ministry of Interior and Justice and threw two grenades at the Supreme Court".
The aircraft was identified with a banner that read "Libertad" and "350".
Likewise, the media said that several sources indicated that the BAE had deployed to try to arrest the pilot at La Carlota airbase, "although there are internal quarrels in the CICPC, since officials who do not sympathize with the government are in disagreement with the detention. "
The regime pronounced itself immediately, calling the attack "terrorist act" and associating the pilot with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The Venezuelan Minister of Communication, Ernesto Villegas, explained through a mandatory radio and television address that "the plotter flew the aircraft carrying about 15 shots against the Ministry of Interior, and then went to the headquarters of the Supreme Court where least four grenades of Colombian origin and Israeli manufacture were dropped, of which one did not explode and was collected ", according to the newspaper La Vanguardia.
The minister said that the attacks represented "a coup escalation against the Constitution and its institutions," and linked Perez with a former Interior Minister who recently publicly confirmed his contacts with the CIA, Mr. Miguel Rodríguez Torres.
Although several military movements - around the Government Palace, for example - were deployed, the conditions of a "military coup", as Villegas declared, were not given.
There was no uprising by the Armed Forces and the immediate response of the national government seems to suggest that the events were coordinated premeditatedly by a coalition outside the opposition, whose leaders were kidnapped in the National Assembly.
At 9 pm, the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court (TSJ) admitted an appeal that declared new powers to the Defensoría del Pueblo and its representative, Tarek William Saab, thus revealing the ace under the government's sleeve.
The new powers of the ombudsman would include the "promotion, defense and monitoring of constitutional rights and guarantees" as well as "broad powers of preventive action, action and reparation".
In this way, the Supreme Court annulled the appointment of the Deputy Public Prosecutor and gave the Office of the Public Prosecutor to the Ombudsman, passing over the figure of the Prosecutor Luisa Ortega Díaz, who has declared in open disagreement with the measures of the regime.
From now on, Saab would be in charge of investigating and prosecuting human rights abuses, according to CNN, in a national situation in which the opposition has denounced at international level the abuses of power and the violent repression of the government against its opponents.
For its part, the Venezuelan opposition has called for maintaining street actions, calling for a "lockdown" of the main roads of the country today between 12 noon and 4 pm.