Groups linked to the Venezuelan right-wing opposition have unleashed a wave of violence across Venezuela following their loss at Sunday’s presidential elections and their refusal to accept the official results, again (as in many times in the past) alleging fraud without providing any proof, in order to undermine the will of the people.
Henrique Capriles, the losing candidate, called his supporters onto the streets and this was quickly followed on Monday by violence.
The situation has particularly worsened after right-wing national newspapers published a doctored photo claiming to show the government burning ballot papers and an opposition-aligned journalist falsely claimed that ballot boxes were being held by Cuban doctors – the first false accusation leading to attacks on buildings of the country’s independent national electoral council, the second on widespread attacks on the nation’s health services.
The houses of the families of prominent politicians and of the head of the electoral council , as well as locals headquarters of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), and the electoral councils have all been subjected to violence.
Likewise public health workers and buildings, state supermarkets, community media buildings and other social services built the Chavez government were attacked including examples of arson. Anti-chavista groups also blocked some important avenues and highways.
There are press reports that this violence has resulted in the loss of life of some Chavez supporters. Luis Garcia Polanco, 24, a youth activist in the United Socialist Party of Venezuela was reported to have been shot dead in front of the National Electoral Council (CNE) building in Zulia after a group of arrived people demanding a recount of votes. Reuters is now reporting that four people have died due to the right-wing opposition’s post-election violence. Additionally, there are reports that a government supporter has been set on fire alive.
The opposition has organised protests against local headquarters of the National Electoral Council across the county for Tuesday and there are fears that the violence could be stepped up as the opposition seek to overturn illegitimately overturn the narrower than expected victory.
Blogged from Venezuela Solidarity Campaign