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Caracas metro stations closed ahead of anti-government protest

Caracas metro stations closed ahead of anti-government protest”

The Information Ministry did not respond to a request for information, although Socialist Party officials tweeted that Maduro had been received by a cheering crowd in San Felix.

Demonstrators help a journalist who was injured in a leg while covering clashes between demonstrators and the Bolivarian National Guard during a protest in Caracas, Venezuela, Monday, April 10, 2017.

Twenty-year-old Daniel Queliz was killed Monday evening in the central coastal city of Valencia after a friend says he was struck in the neck by gunfire while participating in the protest.

His death comes on the heels of the killing of 19-year-old Jairo Ortiz on the outskirts of Caracas on Thursday in the area of an opposition protest.

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Although the court quickly reversed its decision, street protests have continued.

The OAS chief, Luis Almagro, called for elections to restore full democracy in Venezuela, given the political and institutional crisis roiling the country. Eighteen people were detained on Tuesday and Interior Minister Nestor Reverol said officers would continue to be deployed around the country.

Gerardo Blyde, mayor of the borough of Baruta in the capital Caracas, said police dropped tear gas canisters from helicopters, a claim that was repeated by government human rights liaison Tarek William Saab. However renewed protests were also called this past weekend after former opposition presidential candidate and current Miranda Governor Henrique Capriles Radonski was banned from holding office for fifteen years by the Comptroller General's office for "illicit administrative practices".

Venezuelans have been irate for months over shortages of basic goods and roaring inflation that have led to millions skipping meals or surviving on starches.

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"We urge demonstrators to express themselves non-violently and call on government security forces to protect peaceful protest, not prevent it", a U.S. State Department spokesman said Monday. Even a hospital was tear-gassed.

The Venezuelan prosecutor's office said that nine people had been arrested for allegedly causing damage to the Supreme Court building during protests on Saturday. "What is their agenda?"

The opposition is demanding a date for gubernatorial elections that were supposed to take place past year, as well as a timeline for future elections including the presidential vote, which is constitutionally mandated for 2018.

Regional governorship polls were postponed indefinitely in December and municipal ones are due later this year amid a chaotic political struggle.

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The violence in the streets seemed to intensify.



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