An assault on the Venezuelan president, Nicholas Maduro, was committed, but the head of the state was not injured. During a speech delivering at the ceremony celebrating the 81st anniversary of the creation of the National Guard in Caracas, broadcast on television, there was an explosion. It happened exactly when the president talked about the state of the economy. Maduro, along with other government officials, looked up, after which the sound in the broadcast disappeared. Immediately the camera showed how dozens of soldiers fled, and the broadcast was interrupted, according to Evropeiska Pravda.
What had happened?
As it became known later that the explosive was hidden in two unmanned drones. According to the plan of those who attempted to assault, the drones were supposed to explode simultaneously above and in front of the president of the state. However, this plan did not work – one aircraft crashed into a dwelling house, another was shot down by snipers. Each of the unmanned aerial vehicles has a kilogram of C-4 explosives. “Maduro was the victim of an attack with flying devices that contained an explosive charge. The president was not injured, and seven soldiers got hurt”, – told the Venezuelan Communication Minister Jorge Rodriguez. This is the official, so-called, pre-release version of the events.
However, such an opinion is disagreeing with representatives of the Emergency Service, who worked at the site of the explosion. According to АР, three officials on condition of anonymity stated that the incident occurred as a result of an explosion of a gas tank in an apartment next door. There was a smoke from the windows of the building.
Who are accused of attacking the president?
The next day after the incident, Nicholas Maduro appeal to the nation with the words: “It was an attempt to kill me. Today they tried to kill me,” he said. According to the head of state, he thought that it was a firework because of the event, but then almost immediately there was a second explosion, after which the operation for its protection and evacuation began.
However, nobody knows who exactly wanted to kill Venezuelan president: the ultra right-wing opposition, the United States and Colombia were accused of that assault. Maduro said in his statement that the evidence collected at the moment indicates that the extreme right opposition, supported by Colombia, is behind the scourge. Maduro added that there is no doubt: the President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, is personally responsible for the attack. Later, the country’s authorities hinted that the United States could stand, informs AP.
US and Colombia reject accusations
The Colombian government called the accusations by Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro of organizing an assassination attempt absurd ones. The relevant statement was issued by the Colombian Foreign Ministry. “The Foreign Ministry, on behalf of the Colombian government, strongly rejects accusations against President of Colombia Juan Manuel Santos, made by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. The accusation that the Colombian leader is responsible for the assault on the Venezuelan President are absurd and devoid of any reason. We demand respect for President Juan Manuel Santos, the Government and the Colombian people,” according to a statement from the Office on Twitter’s official website.
The United States of America denied their involvement in the explosion in Caracas in a similar way. “I can say unequivocally, in this case there is no interference by the American government. The Government of Venezuela has some clear information that they want to provide us that could potentially bring a violation of the American criminal law, we will consider it carefully,” said John Bolton, National Security Advisor.
It should be reminded that the president of Venezuela has repeatedly accused the United States of having imposed sanctions on officials. In particular, Maduro said that American politicians are going to put an end to twenty-year socialist regime in Venezuela.
Possible reasons of the assault
Among the main reasons of the assault on the Venezuelan president are the economic and humanitarian catastrophe in the country. As CBS News writes, the assassination took place against the backdrop of worsening economic and humanitarian crises and the growing isolation of the Maduro regime from other countries. “The regime of US sanctions against Venezuela is increasingly affecting the country’s economy, Venezuela’s political leadership is limited in moving outside of the country, and the authorities in Caracas is called “the regime,” the publication emphasizes.
For the same reasons, the president of Colombia hints Manuel Santos. “Eight years ago, we agreed with Chavez and Maduro on what exactly history would show, which economic system would be better. In Colombia, inflation for the year is 3.12%, Venezuelan inflation for 12 months: 1 million %. Everything is clear,” – he wrote on his Twitter page.
In the context of an extremely depressing economic situation, Venezuela does not look altogether logical in the organization of an assassination attempt by Colombia or the United States. What is the meaning of these states to eliminate Maduro, whose regime “dig a hole”. However, the assassination of the president is a direct proof of an international conspiracy to overthrow the socialist government.
Terrorists from “nowhere”
The official responsibility for an attempt on Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro took on an earlier unknown group called the Flannel Soldiers (Soldados de Franela). It is reported by DW. “To support the government, which has forgotten the constitution and outrageously uses the state service for its own enrichment, is an image of military honor. We show that they are vulnerable, currently, the goal has not been achieved, but it is a matter of time,” according to Twitter. Flannel soldiers point out that the purpose of the operation was to fly two unmanned aerial vehicles loaded with C-4 explosive substance into the presidential area, but “the honorary guards snipers shot down the drones to achieve the goal.”
It is interesting that according to the Associated Press, this message is not confirmed – the organization did not respond to a journalist’s request.
Official suspects or scapegoats?
Meanwhile, after an assassination attempt on the Venezuelan president, law enforcement detained two suspects. Interior Minister Nestor Reverol said that one of the suspects had already been wanted for involvement in an assault on a military base in 2017, which killed two people. Another suspect was detained during a wave of protests against Maduro in 2014, but later released for some reason. Communications Minister Jorge Rodríguez said that preparations for the operation had been taken by the performers for at least six months.
In addition, 11 journalists were arrested, officials from the Venezuelan, Spanish and Argentine publications, said Venezuela’s National Workers’ Union.
Was there an attempt?
From the above-mentioned facts, it is clear that Maduro should be “liquidated” for something. But it’s not quite clear for whom it is profitable. After Maduro’s death, life in the country will change for the better? Hardly. The attempt is a matter for the Venezuelan authorities. Under the pretext of attacking the president, the repression and control of the country can be further strengthened. Or divert attention from real problems in the country: the fall of the economy, the sharp rise in prices, the massive disconnection of electricity, foreign blockade, etc.
The following facts point to the idea of staging an assassination. The emergence of an unknown group of Flannel soldiers, which assumed responsibility for the terrorist attack. That is not the case, either because of this, in a state where the government fully controls the army, police and other security structures; there is a group that assault on a president during a mass event. It is doubtful.
On the other hand, it is not believed that Maduro is so unprofessional special services that allow unknown dredges to fly calmly over the place where the president plugs up. As it is known, according to the protocol of the first person’s protection, during the mass events of the special services check all entrances, approaches to the scene, roofs, windows, cellars and so on within several kilometers. Moreover, suddenly there are two drones full of explosives. Do amateurs work in the Venezuelan intelligence services?