Military Vehicle Runs Over Pro-Guaidó Protesters in Venezuela

Military Vehicle Runs Over Pro-Guaidó Protesters in Venezuela
Supporters of interim president Juan Guaidó take cover during clashes with security forces in Caracas on April 30, 2019. (Matias Delacroix/AFP/Getty Images)

A crowd of protestors supporting Venezuela’s interim President Juan Guaidó’s were run over by a military vehicle on April 30 as the uprising turned violent.

In a video circulating on social media, a Venezuelan National Guard vehicle is seen plowing into a crowd of protesters outside the La Carlota military Air Force base.

It’s not yet clear if someone was injured in the incident. In the video, protestors are seen gathering around someone run over while others retaliate by throwing stones at the armored vehicle.

Guaidó’s plan to bring freedom to the country took on a new life on Tuesday as he gathered on the streets with a small contingent of heavily armed troops and called for Venezuelans and the military to rise up.

Joining him was activist Leopoldo Lopez, who had been detained since 2014 for leading protests against Maduro. One on-the-ground reporter said the “entire city” was mobilized in support of Guaidó.

“I want to tell the Venezuelan people: This is the moment to take to the streets and accompany these patriotic soldiers,” said Lopez. “Everyone should come to the streets, in peace.”

However, the protests turned violent as Guaidó and Lopez joined protesters for an “Operation Freedom” rally inside the Air Force base, reported Local 10.

NTD Photo
Members of the Bolivarian National Guard who joined Venezuelan interim president Juan Guaido fire into the air to repel forces loyal to dictator Nicolas Maduro who arrived to disperse a demonstration near La Carlota military base in Caracas on April 30, 2019. (Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images)

The regime, run by illegitimate dictator Nicolás Maduro, has been trying to minimize the uprising. After Guaidó said that Lopez was freed from house arrest by military supporters, Maduro’s Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza accused the United States of paying off a guard and supporting Lopez’s escape. Sen. Marco Rubio, (R-Fla.) took to Twitter to denounce the violence, “Military & security leaders must realize they are & will be held responsible for this,” he wrote.

Rubio said that Tuesday’s violent uprising is not ideological, “This is the result of desperation after years of hunger, disease & mass migration caused by MaduroRegime corruption, incompetence & abuses. They see no other options left to bring change,” he wrote in another message on Twitter.

Rubio earlier shared a video showing rapid fire shots heard in an area near the LaCarlota Air Force Base to disperse Pro-Guaidó protesters.

Earlier during the day, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security advisor John Bolton, and Vice President Mike Pence collectively said that the United States is fully supporting Guaidó’s move.

“Today interim President Juan Guaidó announced start of Operación Libertad,” Pompeo said on Twitter. “The U.S. Government fully supports the Venezuelan people in their quest for freedom and democracy. Democracy cannot be defeated.”

As part of the “Operation Freedom” phase, Venezuelans were called to pour into the streets, especially to the country’s capital. Armed military units loyal to Guaidó were seen positioning themselves to defend the La Carlota base in Caracas, where he was currently stationed at.

On-the-ground footage showed some of Maduro’s military forces deserting their posts and joining Guaidó, who is internationally recognized as the legitimate president with the backing of more than 50 nations.

Epoch Times reporter Bowen Xiao contributed to this report.

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