Venezuela rallies reignited

In the throes of a social and economic crisis, Venezuela has once again seen nationwide protests against President Nicolas Maduro’s Socialist government.

Dozens of activists clashed with security forces, who were blocking one march in Caracas.

The latest wave of rallies followed the Supreme Court’s widely-condemned move to take over the opposition-led congress. The pro-Maduro body later revoked its decision, but demonstrations have continued.

#Venezuela: tens of thousands of Venezuelans have gathered in #Caracas to march against the regime and the supreme court— Thomas van Linge (@arabthomness) April 6, 2017

Protesters labelled the Court’s initial decision a lurch towards dictatorship.

Thousands blocked a main road in the capital and vowed to march to the office of the state ombudsman, the administration’s principal human rights advocate.

The embattled president does still have some support. A counter-rally in the capital attracted crowds to the streets.

Chavistas march peacefully asking for respect and sovereignty for Venezuela #6Abril #Caracas— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) April 6, 2017

Maduro’s government claims a US-backed business elite is responsible for the economic downturn, and subsequent triple-digit inflation and shortages of basic food and medical supplies.

It claims business leaders are trying to instigate a coup, which would result in right-wing rule.