Girish Gupta

HOME

BY COUNTRY

Brazil
Colombia
Cuba
Ecuador
Egypt
Guyana
Iraq
Jordan
Lebanon
Mexico
United Kingdom
Venezuela

BY MEDIUM

Text
Photo
Radio
TV/Video

BY PUBLISHER

Al Jazeera
BBC
BuzzFeed
CBC
Christian Science Monitor
CNN
Daily Mail
Datum
Ecologist
Economist Intelligence Unit
Emerging Markets
Financial Times
Foreign Policy
France 24
Fusion
GlobalPost
Guardian
Independent
La Prensa (Panama)
LatinFinance
Mancunion
Monocle
National (Abu Dhabi)
New Internationalist
New Statesman
New York Times
New Yorker
NPR
PBS
PRI
Radio France Internationale
Reuters
RTE
Sky News
Sun
Sunday Times
Telegraph
TIME
Times of London
USA Today
Vice
WLRN

ABOUT

About
CV
Contact (PGP Key)

Twitter
Facebook
LinkedIn
Venezuela Mayor Is Accused of U.S.-Backed Coup Plot
Feb. 21, 2015 — Caracas, Venezuela

Published by New York Times

The mayor of Caracas, Antonio Ledezma, who was arrested last week by intelligence agents, has been indicted on charges of conspiracy against the Venezuelan government and plotting an American-backed coup.

The government said late Friday that charges had been brought against Mr. Ledezma, 59, and that he would be moved from a military intelligence facility to the Ramo Verde military prison just outside the capital, which for a year has housed Leopoldo López, an opposition figure who was charged with inciting major antigovernment unrest.

Mr. Ledezma’s lawyer, Omar Estacio, said Saturday that the maximum jail time for the charges would be 25 years.

“The accusations are weak, and we believe we will win a favorable decision,” said Mr. Estacio. “The family is, of course, worried, but Mr. Ledezma remains calm and optimistic.”

President Nicolás Maduro appeared on state television the night after Mr. Ledezma’s arrest on Thursday and railed against the United States, specifically comments from the White House on Friday that the Obama administration was considering “tools” to “better steer the Venezuelan government.”

“For a long time in Latin America, we have stripped away American imperialist aggression,” Mr. Maduro said in a speech to a crowd of supporters. “I feel sorry for President Obama because he is trapped in an alley without an exit, and he now thinks the way out is to attack Venezuela.”

Mr. Maduro then criticized those in Venezuela he saw as conspiring with Washington.

“In Venezuela, no one is untouchable,” he said. “The coup plotting is over. Whoever wants to seek that past will be met with the fist of the people, an iron fist.”

Small protests have taken place across Venezuela against Mr. Ledezma’s arrest. The president’s approval ratings are in very low, thanks in large part to a crumbling economy with an annual inflation rate of about 70 percent and major shortages of basic goods.

The arrest of Mr. Ledezma and the repeated criticism of the United States by the government are seen by critics as an effort to divert attention from the country’s problems before legislative elections late this year and a potential referendum in 2016 for a change of government.

Henrique Capriles Radonski, an opposition leader and two-time presidential candidate, said Friday that the government’s days were numbered.

“It’s so obvious. This revolution is over,” Mr. Capriles said. “They don’t want elections because they know they will lose.”

Mr. Maduro said that further evidence of a United States-backed coup attempt would be presented. The president’s primary ammunition against Mr. Ledezma was an open letter earlier this month calling for a “national agreement for a transition,” and signed by Mr. Ledezma, Mr. López and María Corina Machado, an opposition politician charged in December with plotting to assassinate Mr. Maduro.

Filed from
Caracas, Venezuela






More...

Crisis-hit Venezuela halts publication of another major indicator
Mar. 21, 2017


Back in Venezuela, 'world's worst skier' proud of his performance
Feb. 26, 2017


Some poor Venezuelan parents give away children amid deep crisis
Dec. 15, 2016


Desperate to dump soon-worthless cash, Venezuelans flock to banks
Dec. 13, 2016


Inflation-hit Venezuela to pull largest bill from circulation
Dec. 11, 2016


Venezuela confirms bigger bills amid world's highest inflation
Dec. 04, 2016


Venezuela PDVSA awards $3.2 bln oil service contracts, protest brews
Sept. 21, 2016


Maduro revels in support from Zimbabwe, Iran as critics decry failed summit
Sept. 18, 2016


Venezuela summit draws few leaders in blow to Maduro
Sept. 17, 2016


Near Venezuela summit, pots-and-pans protest showed domestic tumult
Sept. 17, 2016


Once 'Pearl of Caribbean' gets new shine for Venezuela summit
Sept. 16, 2016


Maduro boasts start of Venezuela summit despite 'gringo pressure'
Sept. 13, 2016


Venezuela's troubles overshadow Non-Aligned Summit
Sept. 11, 2016


Venezuela renews drilling tender after earlier collapse - sources
Aug. 26, 2016


Hungry in a Venezuelan slum, a Facebook Live video
Aug. 04, 2016








© Girish Gupta