Venezuela braces for opposition, pro-govt rallies

8:43 AM, Feb 22, 2014   |    comments
People protest against the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, on February 21, 2014. The death toll from escalating anti-government protests in Venezuela jumped to eight on Friday, as President Nicolas Maduro's leftist administration threatened to cut off fuel to areas 'under fascist siege.' AFP PHOTO / RAUL ARBOLEDA (Photo credit should read RAUL ARBOLEDA/AFP/Getty Images)
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CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) - Venezuelans are bracing for trouble as both supporters of the government and the opposition prepare for major rallies in a country that has been roiled by violence in recent days.

Women supporters of President Nicolas Maduro are planning a march Saturday in the capital of Caracas. The opposition says it will also hold large rallies throughout the country.

Opposition Gov. Henrique Capriles says these are intended as peaceful protests to show public discontent over high crime, food shortages and other problems facing Venezuela. President Maduro has said the wave of protests and violent clashes that began Feb. 12 are part of a right-wing attempt to topple his socialist government.

Political violence is blamed for at least eight deaths and more than 100 injuries on both sides.

 

(Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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