Venezuela says explosions were an attack on President Maduro

Frederick Owens
August 5, 2018

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has survived an assassination attempt at a military event in Caracas.

Security forces check a building after an explosion was heard while Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro was attending a ceremony.

Mr Maduro was standing next to his wife Cilia Flores and several high-ranking military officials for the event broadcast on radio and television.

While there was initial confusion as to what the footage actually showed, multiple sources have since reported that several drones "exploded" near the President while he was speaking.

"This is an attack against President Nicolas Maduro", Communication Minister Jorge Rodriguez said.

Seven soldiers were injured but President Maduro was taken to safety.

Mr Maduro is expected to make a public address on the incident soon.

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Several firefighters at the scene are disputing the government's version of events.

Miguel Perez Abad, president of the Venezuelan government banks, tweeted "In a few moments, our national government will inform about what happened at Bolivar Avenue".

The Associated Press could not independently verify the authenticity of message. "They failed and will continue to fail. We didn't have success today, but it's just a question of time", said the group, which says it was founded in 2014 to bring together all of Venezuela's "groups of resistance".

In the midst of near-daily protests a year ago, a rogue police officer flew a stolen helicopter over the capital and launched grenades at several government buildings.

Dozens of soldiers were seen running away before the broadcast was cut off.

Photographs on social media appeared to show bodyguards shielding Maduro with black bulletproof panels.

The attack comes as the nation struggles with an economic crisis.

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