Venezuela arrests over ‘uprising attempt’
Arrests have been made in Venezuela after soldiers tried to launch an uprising against President Maduro. 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.
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”.
Members of the assembly were elected after a controversial vote last Sunday, in which no opposition candidates participated and which has led to allegations of voting fraud.
The government has strongly denied the allegations. Mr Maduro repeatedly says he is trying to keep the peace.
The assembly has the power to rewrite the constitution and could override the opposition-controlled National Assembly.