Caracas.- Recent months have shown that demonstrations by opposition groups in Venezuela are far from peaceful, despite their organizers claiming the opposite.
In recent weeks, the actions unleashed by extremists linked to the self-styled Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD), have been marked by vandalism, as seen on Friday, June 23, when they burned vehicles near an air base located in Miranda state.
Three articulated trucks for transporting food, and a Bolivarian National Police (PNB) vehicle were set on fire in the vicinity of the Generalísimo Francisco de Miranda air base, known as La Carlota.
These violent groups have maintained a siege on this military installation for several days, and according to testimony broadcast by the Zurda Konducta program on Venezolana de Televisión, two drivers of these vehicles confirmed that the instigators wielded firearms.
Emiliano Pulido, one of the drivers, explained, “They grabbed my son and me and stopped us with pistols in hand. I was kidnapped by three hooded people; I was brought down from the truck by a blow and at gunpoint. They had 9mm pistols, and if I’m not mistaken, they had rifles.”
According to official figures, since April the violence instigated by extreme sectors of the opposition has left more than 70 people dead, over 1,400 injured, and cost millions in damages to public and private property.
Evidence shared on social media indicates that there are no peaceful opposition demonstrations taking place. On Thursday, June 22, as on previous days, photos and videos posted showed groups of violent demonstrators in different parts of the country carrying out actions such as those at La Carlota.
In this regard, Minister for Internal Relations, Justice and Peace, Néstor Reverol, tweeted that the siege of La Carlota is recurrent; in total no less than ten attacks have been carried out by these violent groups against the military base.
Despite the nature of these protests and the damages caused to military installations, Bolivarian National Armed Forces (FANB) authorities have ruled out the use of arms to repel the attack, in response to orders from the government, to avoid even greater destruction.
The attitude of the military contrasts with the actions of these groups, who use homemade explosives, stones, bottles, gunshots, Molotov cocktails and other devices to wreak havoc.
Meanwhile, the La Carlota air base is not the only military facility to have been attacked. In the state of Táchira, it was necessary to deploy the Plan Zamora, a strategic and operational plan activated for the security and defense of the nation in case of threats to internal order.
This decision was made after violent elements burned the Vásquez artillery group of the Bolivarian Army, based in the city of San Cristóbal, whose command headquarters was besieged by 80 to 100 people.
“The attack was directed to where the gas cylinders are. Can you imagine what a Molotov could do to a gas cylinder, where there is ammunition, explosives, weapons, right in the center of the city?” stated Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino López in condemning the attacks.
Likewise, on June 12, the Paramacay Fort was attacked, home to the Army’s 41st Armored Brigade, located in the La Granja sector of the municipality of Naguanagua, Carabobo state. A total of 30 people were arrested and several were injured, including four state security officials.
Despite this hostile atmosphere, and continued calls for violence, President Nicolás Maduro has reiterated his rejection of the violence promoted by certain extremist sectors of the opposition, and the commitment of the Bolivarian Government and the FANB to work to consolidate peace. (PL)