Helicopter attacks Venezuela’s pro Maduro Supreme Court

George Tzokas
By George Tzokas
June 28, 2017World News
Helicopter attacks Venezuela’s pro Maduro Supreme Court

A Venezuelan police helicopter opened fire on a government ministry and dropped grenades on the Supreme Court there on Tuesday, escalating the ongoing political crisis.

The helicopter fired 15 shots at the Interior Ministry, where many people were attending a social event. It then dropped four grenades on the court, where judges were meeting, officials said.

A cell phone video of the attack from a nearby building captures the sounds of the blasts and the shocked reactions by the people recording it unfold .

President Nicolas Maduro called it an attack by “terrorists” seeking a coup.

The man who apparently led the attack says he and the men that joined him have no political affiliations.

In a video filmed before the attack, investigative police pilot Oscar Perez describe the group as
nationalists, patriots and institutionalists.

“We are a group of military officials, police and civilians in the search for balance and against this transitory criminal government. We do not belong to nor do we have a partisan political leaning,” said Perez.

“This combat is not with the rest of the security forces of the state. It is against the imposed impunity of this government.”

There are no reported injuries from the attack.

President Maduro has faced increased opposition from within the government and security forces as he has moved forward with constitutional reforms that his opponents say are meant to cement his grip on the country.

The 54-year-old socialist leader has faced three months of protests from opposition leaders who decry him as a dictator. They say he has wrecked the country.

Venezuela was once South America’s most prosperous economy. Since economic reforms introduced by previous socialist leader Hugo Chavez and continued by Maduro, the country has suffered massive economic contraction and hyper-inflation.

A flood of Venezuelans have migrated to Colombia in what some have described as a potential refugee crisis.

At least 75 people have died, and hundreds more been injured and arrested, in the anti-government unrest since April.

The demonstrators have been demanding general elections, the release of hundreds of jailed opposition activists, and independence for the opposition-controlled National Assembly legislature.

They also want measures to alleviate a brutal economic crisis.
Matthew Little for NTD

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