05:58 GMT +310 December 2016
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    Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro

    Venezuelan Protesters Split Over Stance on President Maduro

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    Venezuela was divided into two major camps on Saturday, as supporters and opponents of the current president Nicolas Maduro marched in different states of the country.

    MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) — Maduro's opponents marched across 15 of 23 Venezuelan states. The opposition insists on the his resignation, planning to hold a referendum on the termination of his powers and to amend the constitution, if Maduro refuses to step down. The first reading on the referendum bill has already taken place.

    In parallel, the Venezuelan capital of Caracas witnessed the marches of Maduro's supporters, who also called on US President Barack Obama to cancel his decision on extending sanctions against Venezuela.

    A year ago, Obama issued an executive order imposing new sanctions against seven Venezuelan officials, freezing their assets and banning them from entering the United States. Obama described the "erosion" of human rights guarantees in Venezuela as an "unusual and extraordinary threat" to US security. In response, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez said Caracas would reconsider its relations with Washington.

    On Wednesday, Obama renewed the sanctions.

    Relations between Washington and Caracas have been unstable since the late Hugo Chavez became president in 1999. The relations particularly worsened worsened recently over alleged human rights violations during protests in Venezuela’s capital against the government of Maduro in February of 2014.

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    • drjasonsmith
      It is time to roundup these fascists and their NA stooges and send them to Miami along with the rest of the gusanos. Maybe they can help Marco Rubio.
    • cast235
      Just KICK all U.S institutions and embassy if they continue that CHARLATAN way to call attention, for regime change.
      They want to get Venezuela like Syria. Full of terrorists .
      All because Venezuela doesn't gas them and use water cannons, like Turkey. And use military and kill all opposition like Erdogan. Oh wait, Erdogan get no sanctions right?
      Reportedly Erdogan is killing Iraqi civilians.
    • bangein reply tocast235(Show commentHide comment)
      cast235, you are right countries that really abuse human rights are enjoying life like nothing is happening around them. Is Obama using this same approach"Obama described the "erosion" of human rights guarantees in Venezuela as an "unusual and extraordinary threat" to US security. to those countries??? no because they are his friends. Yeah friends can do bad thing, but when the enemy do it , it is really a big threat to humanity.
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