Aragua state governor Tarek El Aissami spoke on yesterday’s attack on the municipal offices of Mario Briceño Iragorry that left 15 people injured. The attack was carried out by a pro-government group made up largely of striking sanitation workers.
Through Twitter, El Aissami blamed the mayor of the city, Delson Guarete, the violence:
Once again, there has been a lamentable and regretful act of violence in the municipality of Mario Briceño Iragorry provoked by the guarimbero [one who makes guarimbas, a street barricade].
El Aissami also voiced his support for the striking workers, saying:
I stress our support for the workers in their just and peaceful protest. We denounce the violence of the guarimbero mayor of MBI [Mario Briceño Iragorry].
The governor’s comments appear to contradict the reality of the event. Yesterday, a group of approximately 50 people forced their way into the city’s municipal office. They proceeded to assault city staff in the building, throwing one of them through a second storey window. In total, at least 15 city employees were injured in the attack.
The attack began at around noon, when mayor Guarete tweeted that the pro-government group was blocking the building’s entrance, “impeding entry and exit” to the building.
Yesterday, as the situation was developing, El Aissami said:
For how long with this mayor [Guarete] continue to plant the seeds of terror and chaos in his city? Only with justice can we neutralize fascism.
Ceballos Suffering Facial Paralysis
Daniel Ceballos is reported to be suffering from facial paralysis and kidney problems as a result of the hunger strike he is currently engaged in. The news comes from Juan Carlos Gutierrez, one of Ceballos’ lawyers.
Ceballos is currently on the 13th day of a hunger strike in the 26 de Julio prison in Guarico state.
Today, the United Nation’s High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed his concern for Ceballos’ health, and called on the Venezuelan government to release him and other political prisoners “unconditionally and without delay”.
Maduro: CNE Will Announce Elections “Whenever They Want”
Maduro spoke to a crowd of supporters today in Belen de Guarenas, Miranda state, and briefly addressed the growing concerns over the fact that the Consejo Nacional Electoral [CNE] has yet to officially call for parliamentary elections this year. The unusual delay in the announcement has given rise to much speculation, including the idea that the elections might not take place at all.
On the issue, Maduro said:
The right wing is scared, but they’re pretending like they’re not. They’re yelling, “Let the CNE announce a date!” The CNE will announce the date whenever they want. What I’m telling you is that our revolutionary, Bolivarian and chavista forces are ready whenever the CNE makes the call. We will go to the [parliamentary] elections and we [will earn] a really good electoral victory.
Maduro Accused Opposition Deputy in Murder
Earlier today, Maduro accused an unnamed opposition deputy in the murder of Robert Serra and his partner, Maria Herrera.
While the investigation into Serra and Herrera’s murder is still ongoing, Maduro announced that a National Assembly member whom he refused to name was suspected of orchestrating the killings. Maduro said:
In the first few hours of this investigation, a MUD [Mesa de la Unidad Democratica] [National Assembly] deputy appears to have been implicated. I’ve asked directly for an investigation to be conducted (…) that strictly adheres to objectivity. He’s a deputy of the ultra right-wing.
El Aissami’s comments on the attack on Mario Briceño Iragorry, along with Maduro’s regarding the investigation into the murder of the unnamed MUD deputy, are a perfect example of the sinister abuse language, logic and the law suffer at the hands of Venezuela’s rulers.
At the same time that PSUV supporters threw Alejandro Ledo out of a window possibly killing him, El Aissami blamed him for the violence. The 15 municipal workers who were savagely beaten by a pro-PSUV crowd are themselves to blame for their beatings. The attackers are “just and peaceful”; the victims are violent terrorists. Up is down. Black is white.
Similarly, Maduro calling for an “objective” investigation after he personally has called for it is asinine. Aside from the obvious questions, “Since when can the head of the executive personally call for an investigation? Aren’t the executive and the judiciary supposed to be separate? Doesn’t this mean the judiciary is an arm of the executive, something that is contrary to the principles of democracy and justice?”, the idea that any judge can remain objective after being called on personally by Maduro to carry out an investigation is an insult to everyone who hears the remarks. There can be no objectivity in such a situation. It is for this reason precisely that democratic societies separate the executive and the judiciary.
If there is any good to be found in these daily abuses to language, logic and the law is that they are so egregious that they are bound to spell the doom of regimes which perpetrate them, sooner or later.
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