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A United States spokesperson rebuffed Maduro’s calls for dialogue between the two nations, saying that the dialogue “cannot resolve” the problems facing Venezuela.

The spokesperson, who spoke to Spain’s EFE on condition of anonymity, said that Washington and Caracas have not yet formally spoken about last week’s sanctions, and that:

We are always willing to speak directly to the Venezuelan government, as is the case with other governments.

However, the spokesperson also pointed out that no dialogue between the two countries would work to actually solving the crisis in Venezuela:

… Venezuela’s problems cannot be resolved through dialogue with the United States. Venezuela’s political and economical problems can only be resolved if Venezuelans talk with one another in an atmosphere of respect for human rights and democracy.

SENIAT Workers Run Out of Mall

A video surfaced on YouTube two days ago appearing to show government officials – allegedly with the Servicio Nacional Integrado de Administración Aduanera y Tributaria [National Integrated Service for the Administration of Customs Duties and Taxes] (SENIAT), the country’s tax and revenue agency.

According to the video description, the event took place at the Centro Comercial Ciudad Tamanaco in Caracas. It appears to show government officials preparing to set up an area with some kind of informational materials. When some of the shoppers notice what is going on, they begin to yell at the government officials, eventually forcing them to at least postpone their event.

Below, the video, along with some of the things being yelled by the shoppers:

Fuera! [Leave!]
Y no! Y no! Y no me da la gana! Una dictadura igualita a la Cubana! [Roughly, “No! No! No! I don’t want a dictatorship like the one in Cuba!”]
Y va a caer! Y va a caer! Este gobierno va a caer! [And it will fall! And it will fall! This government will fall!]

Police: Armed Funeral Processions Not O.K.

Eduardo Serrano, the head of the Caracas Police, reminded citizens today that armed funeral processions are not allowed in the country, “more so if they’re shooting on the road”. The chief’s comments follow the deaths of two people who were killed by a group of armed individuals after they failed to stop for a funeral procession.

The victims, Nathaly Trujillo (31) and Pedro Ramon Marapacuto Santander (38) were murdered inside their vehicle on their way to Caracas this past Tuesday. As they approached the city on the Valle-Coche highway, they came across a funeral procession which was blocking access through the road. A group of men ordered the vehicle to stop, and when it failed to do so, opened fire. A third passenger was injured.

Serrano concluded:

These kinds of angry, impotent demonstrations cannot be permitted, [which caused] innocent people to become victims of this vile crime.

 

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