Crackdown Feared in Venezuela After Alleged Assassination Attempt on Maduro

Security personnel surround Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro during an incident as he was giving a speech in Caracas Venezuela Saturday Aug. 4 2018. Drones armed with explosives detonated near Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro as he gave a spe

Crackdown Feared in Venezuela After Alleged Assassination Attempt on Maduro

Six people have been arrested after yesterday's apparent assassination attempt on President Nicolas Maduro in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas, the nation's interior minister said on national TV. The drones did not reach him, officials said, but it was not clear if they were shot down or exploded prematurely.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpPastor at Trump rally prays to shield Trump from "jungle journalism" Bill Russell: Being criticized by Trump is the "biggest compliment you can get" Salmon farmers in California fear Trump will destroy their industry MORE's national security adviser, John Bolton, appeared on "Fox News Sunday", where he denied any us involvement in the incident.

State television footage of the rally showed Maduro startled by what appeared to be an explosion and footage later panned to soldiers lined up on a boulevard who chaotically broke ranks in what appeared to be a reaction to a second blast.

The parade Maduro attended was to mark the one-year anniversary of the Constitutional Assembly, a legislative body packed with Maduro loyalists that arrogated powers from the opposition-ruled National Assembly.

He also blamed Venezuelans living in the US.

Speaking to el Nuevo Herald, the activists also dismissed accusations by President Nicolás Maduro that the attack is linked to people in Florida.

The group has said that its goal is to unite Venezuela's resistance groups, and they released a statement late Saturday in which they decried the state of the country under Maduro.

He blamed the Venezuelan political far right in collaboration with the Colombian far right, and the current Colombian President Santos of being behind the assassination attack.

Colombia said the accusation was "baseless". Maduro has steadily moved to concentrate power as the nation reels from a crippling economic crisis.

One witness showed The Associated Press cellphone video of a drone crashing into a building.

USA national security adviser John Bolton told Fox News in an interview on Sunday that the United States was not involved in the blast.

"If the government of Venezuela has hard information that they want to present to us that would show a potential violation of USA criminal law, we'll take a serious look at it".

"It was so strong the building shook", she said. The stage where Maduro spoke had been removed.

Germany said merely that it was "closely following developments on the ground", while Portugal opined that the crisis in Venezuela could be overcome by "dialogue and national consensus" in line with "democratic principles".

'Whoever did this, he'll use it to further restrict liberty and purge the government and armed forces, ' he said.

"We are going to bet for the good of our country", Maduro declared triumphantly moments before the explosion.

Images on social media showed officers surrounding Maduro with what appeared to be a black bulletproof shields as they escorted him from the site.

Maduro said the incident had left him convinced of the military's support and undeterred in carrying forward the torch of Chavez's revolution.

"That drone came after me", he said. "I'm sure I'll live for many more years".

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