Today is the 26th anniversary of the start of El Caracazo, a period of unrest that left hundreds of Venezuelans dead and thousands injured. General discontent with the government at the time, coupled with economic instability, led to the violence.
Maduro spoke on the important of the day, saying that the Bolivarian Revolution has its roots in the event. Maduro said:
26 years ago, the Bolivarian Revolution began. It began in February 1989, the revolution to provide a way out of the frustration, the abuses, the looting, to exit away from neo-colonialism.
Having lived through the event, Maduro also provided an account of what he remembers from those days:
At that time, Caracas was engulfed in smoke. I remember that in Guarenas, in the New Circus, Los Teques, there were thousands and thousands of people on the streets. That day, a new history began. The people said “No!” to the International Monetary Fund.
Miranda State Governor Henrique Capriles took the opportunity to speak on where Venezuela has gone in the past 26 years:
Today, we’re suffering through the worst violence in our history. There had never been so many murders before. We have the highest inflation and scarcity rates in the world.
Roa’s Father Speaks to Media
Kluivert Roa’s father has been speaking to the media this week following his son’s death, hoping to call attention to the social and political crisis that led to his son’s death.
On Wednesday, Erick Roa told The Associated Press that he hoped Maduro would take steps to end the violence on Venezuelan streets, and that he was going to bring his son’s case to the attention of international organizations.
Today, Erick had strong words for Maduro. who accused Kluivert of belonging to a a right-wing group earlier this week. Erick fought back against Maduro’s comments by pointing out that his son was a child like any other. Erick said:
The President of the Republic said that my son belonged to a right-wing group. No, Mr. President, he was a 14 year-old child. He had dreams, he was full of life. He was a Christian child who loved to serve God. He was a child who loved to play sports like basketball. He was 1.83 meters tall, and he was a member of the Capacho Scouts.
The President doesn’t have to say such idiotic things. What he’s said is idiotic. I want them to tell me the truth; it’s not only the police officer who is under arrest. I call him “the other child”, because he is only 23 and is still a child. There was a commander there who gave him orders, there was another officer on the motorcycle with him — there are many more people involved here. You say that you want to help me clear this up? The governor says the same thing. Then, really help me and make everyone responsible pay.
Ban Ki-Moon Calls for Dialogue
United States Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon spoke on the situation in Venezuela today, and expressed his concern over the situation in the country. He said:
I’ve been following the current situation very closely, and I hope that all the issues, regardless of their cause, can be addressed through peaceful dialogue.
Maduro: Media War Underway
Speaking on the phone with Aragua state governor Tareck El Aissami, Maduro called on his supporters to take part in an “Anti-Imperialist” march, and said that the country’s private media outlets had “declared war against the people”. The comments can be seen in the video below:
Maduro: We’re going to organize a great march to make the world’s imperialist know that Venezuela must be respected. Come, and bring your Venezuelan flags, your communal councils, and the student movement. Let’s take to the streets tomorrow, February 28. A Saturday of dignity, for our homeland.
Also, I want to talk to this whole campaign, Tareck, that the media bourgeois are waging. The owners of television media in the country — I was watching the news today, Tareck, [on the channels] owned by the bourgeois, and let me tell you, they’re all involved in the coup [inaudible] the kind of treatment they show to the country’s affairs, it’s total, open and unashamed manipulation. So, I’m calling for maximum consciousness from the people of Venezuela, because the media – and the owners of television media – have declared themselves once again, as they did 12 years ago, they’ve once again declared war against the people. So I’m calling for a war of ideas, and the best war of ideas is to mobilize people and get them on the street.
I want to say: Long live the people of February 27 and 28 of 1989! Long live the revolution of February of 1989! Long live the memory of our commander, Hugo Chavez! Independent socialist homeland!
El Aissami: We will live on, and we will win!
Maduro: We will always be victorious. Thanks!