CARACAS (Sputnik) — Edgar Zambrano, the deputy speaker of the Venezuelan opposition-controlled National Assembly, has been detained in the wake of the failed coup in the country, Diosdado Cabello, the head of the government-led National Constituent Assembly has said.
"I am informing you that several minutes ago, one of the leaders of the government overturn of April 30… Edgar Zambrano… was detained," Cabello said live on a state-run TV channel on Wednesday.
Earlier, self-proclaimed president of Venezuela, Juan Guaido, turned to Twitter, saying that the "vice president" of the opposition-controlled National Assembly had been detained by authorities from President Nicolas Maduro's government.
Alertamos al pueblo de Venezuela y la comunidad internacional:— Juan Guaidó (@jguaido) May 8, 2019
El régimen secuestró al primer vicepresidente de la @AsambleaVE @edgarzambranoad.
Intentan desintegrar el poder que representa a todos los venezolanos, pero no lo van a lograr. pic.twitter.com/pA7vvV2nbu
Edgar Zambrano, the assembly "vice president", said on Twitter that agents from the SEBIN intelligence agency had surprised him and, after refusing to let him out of his vehicle, were using a tow truck to take him to the SEBIN's Caracas headquarters, Reuters reported.
Fuimos sorprendidos por el SEBIN, al negarnos salir de nuestro vehículo, utilizaron una grúa para trasladarnos de manera forzosa directamente al Helicoide. Los demócratas nos mantenemos en pie de lucha.— Edgar Zambrano (@edgarzambranoad) May 8, 2019
Edgar Jose Zambrano, alongside with Luis Florido, Henry Ramos Allup, Richard Blanco, Marianela Lopez, Simon Calzadilla and Americo de Grazia lost their immunity on Wednesday following the corresponding decision made by the Venezuelan Constituent National Assembly.
The prosecution charges them with high treason, public conspiring to violate the law, inciting civil uprising, power usurpation and other crimes.
Maduro, recognized by China and Russia among numerous other countries, has accused the United States of seeking to overthrow his government and install Guaido in a bid to get hold of Venezuela's natural resources.
Guaido made a fresh attempt to depose Maduro on April 30, staging a demonstration in front of La Carlota military base in Caracas. However, the attempt has "failed completely," as the Venezuelan government has put it. The office of the Venezuelan prosecutor general has requested 18 arrest warrants to be issued in connection with the coup attempt.