— Conflict News (@Conflicts) August 6, 2017
The BBC has the details.
Arrests have been made in Venezuela after soldiers tried to launch an uprising against President Maduro, officials say.
The ruling Socialist Party’s deputy leader, Diosdado Cabello, called it a “terrorist attack” on Twitter.
It happened in Valencia in Carabobo state in the north-west of the country.
A video released on social media showed uniformed men saying they were rising against a “murderous tyranny”. Venezuela has seen months of protests.
“This is not a coup but a military and civil action to re-establish constitutional order,” said the leader, who gave his name as Juan Caguaripano.
Mr Cabello said full control had been restored at the Fuerte Paramacay military barracks.
A commanding chief of the armed forces, Remigio Ceballos, tweeted that seven people had been arrested.
Earlier, gunfire was reported on social media. Others said they heard the sound of loud patriotic singing at the military base.
In his short speech, Caguaripano said that his group – which he called the 41st Brigade – was standing against the “murderous tyranny of President Nicolás Maduro”.
This is going to get a lot worse before it gets better.
Luisa Ortega, the Chief Prosecutor who broke with Maduro, has now been replaced.
Venezuela’s new constituent assembly has dismissed Chief Prosecutor Luisa Ortega, during its first day of work.
Ms Ortega, a vocal critic of left-wing President Nicolás Maduro, had opposed the assembly’s inauguration on Friday, citing allegations of voting fraud.
Earlier, security forces had surrounded her office in the capital Caracas, preventing her from entering.
Dozens of National Guard officers in riot gear had taken up position around her office. Sharing pictures of the scene, she tweeted: “I denounce this arbitrary act before the national and international community.”
She told reporters that the authorities were trying to hide evidence of corruption and human rights abuses. She added that she would now work to “recover liberty for Venezuela, because we’ve lost it”.
Moreover, Venezuela’s forced isolation is increasing.
South American trade bloc Mercosur suspended Venezuela indefinitely on Saturday, adding more international pressure on President Nicolas Maduro to dismantle a newly created pro-government constituent assembly and restore democracy.
Foreign ministers of Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Brazil announced the decision in Sao Paulo, urging Maduro to release prisoners and immediately start a political transition.
“We are saying: Stop with this! Enough with the deaths, enough with the repression. It is not possible to inflict such torture on the people,” Brazilian Foreign Minister Aloysio Nunes said after the meeting.
As the suspension was announced, the constituent assembly removed dissident state prosecutor Luisa Ortega from her job. Asked to comment on Ortega’s dismissal, Nunes replied with a Latin proverb: “Whom the gods would destroy they first drive mad.”
The Mercosur suspension will not affect trade and migration policies to avoid worsening the humanitarian crisis, Nunes said. “Venezuelans who want to come to Brazil will be welcome.”
It is unclear at this time how Maduro’s consolidation of power will turn out. Venezuelans have been suffering from crippling shortages resulting from poor government and governance dating back before Chavez’s presidency. Maduro may be able to crack down and hold on, especially if he can keep the military, security/intel services, law enforcement, and the courts on his side. But, as we’ve seen with today’s events, he doesn’t have uniform support in all of those. As is almost always the case things are likely to get worse before they get better and Venezuela is likely to go through a set of iterative attempts to resolve it’s problems. This will be punctuated with successive governments/leaders inability to deliver on their promises, stagnation, backsliding, and then new attempts, often preceded by violence, to move things forward.
If you’re looking for a problem set close to home in the US, Venezuela is it. There will be refugees and they’re going to go somewhere, including, potentially, the US seeking shelter and a better life. There will be an ongoing humanitarian crisis. One good hurricane or other disaster – natural or man made – is going to make everything exponentially worse. Now ask yourself: is the US in 2017 prepared to deal with this type of ongoing crisis so close to home? Especially if/when Maduro goes to the old fall back that any military push back is being organized in Washington, DC.