Pro-gov’t, Pro-violence Militants in Venezuela

Pres. Nicolas Maduro seems content to allow his supporters fight fire with firepower in Venezuela, where two protesters where shot and killed by pro-government vigilantes this past Saturday:

[M]asked gunmen emerged from a group of several dozen motorcycle-mounted government loyalists who were attempting to dismantle a barricade in La Isabelica, a working-class district of Valencia that has been a center of unrest since nationwide protests broke out last month.┬áThe barricades’ defenders had been hurling rocks, sticks and other objects at the attackers, who included perhaps a dozen armed men, witnesses told The Associated Press. …┬áPresident Nicolas Maduro has done nothing to publicly discourage the violence by armed pro-government militants, loosely known as ‘colectivos,’ which are also blamed for scores more cases of beatings and intimidation in multiple cities. That includes a March 19 incursion into the architecture academy at the Central University of Venezuela in the capital in which some 40 masked men and women identifying themselves as government defenders bloodied at least a dozen students.

People across the globe have been calling for dialogue between protesters and the government to begin the trek back to peace. A simple ceasefire would be suffice.

Published by Hector Luis Alamo

Hector received a bachelor's degree in history from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where his concentration was on ethnic relations in the United States. Since then, he has written for various publications, including the RedEye, where he is an opinion columnist. He is a regular contributor for Latino Rebels and a staff writer at La Respuesta, a nationwide publication focused on the Puerto Rican Diaspora. Hector is formerly the managing editor at Gozamos, as well as an associate editor at Being Latino. He also writes fiction and poetry.