Explosions rock Caracas ahead of Venezuela voting
December 4, 2005
Venezuela on maximum alert: explosions at several points in Caracas...
President Hugo Chavez FriasPrensa Latina: Following President Hugo Chavez' advice to "have nerves of steel, stand on our own two feet, have faith in ourselves, and fortify our feeling of love, affection and fraternity," Venezuelans ready for Sunday's congressional elections.
The President warned against a US maneuver to destabilize the elections and said the National Armed Forces and the people are on the alert before tomorrow's vote to choose 167 deputies for the National Assembly, 12 for the Latin American Parliament, and 5 for the Andean Parliament.
The election occurs amid a campaign in which six opposition parties withdrew (1.33% of the total) and several explosive devices were detonated at several points in Caracas.
Three people were injured Friday from explosions near the Republic Attorney General's and the Fort Tiuna 3rd Division of the National Armed Forces. At the same time, three explosive devices were detected close to Central University (UCV) and the offices of the National Electoral Council (CNE).
Authorities reported the arrest of 11 people in Ojeda, in western Zulia, and the confiscation of 55 Molotov cocktails, 31 containers of combustibles, 40 cell phones, and other items.
The members of the group, who had National Armed Forces identification cards, were accused of shutting down communication lines, damaging gas pipelines and public services.
Venezuela is on Maximum Alert