Venezuela’s Key Opposition Leaders Rearrested

Venezuela’s Key Opposition Leaders RearrestedVenezuela’s Key Opposition Leaders Rearrested

Two Venezuelan opposition leaders, Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma, have been rearrested, relatives of the pair say.

They were under house arrest after accusations of inciting violence during anti-government protests in 2014, the BBC reported.

Their families said they did not know where the two had been taken.

The move comes just two days after a controversial vote for a constitutional assembly saw violence on the streets, with at least 10 people killed.

President Nicolas Maduro convened the assembly to rewrite Venezuela’s constitution amid spiraling anti-government protests on 1 May.

He argued that the move would create peace and foster dialogue by bringing together different sectors of Venezuela’s polarized society.

But the opposition accused the president of trying to rewrite the constitution in order to maximize his power and sideline the opposition-controlled legislature.

They boycotted the vote and called on Venezuelans to take to the streets in protest. The election was condemned by Latin American leaders, the European Union and the US.

The day of the election was the deadliest so far since the current wave of protest began.

Lopez was taken from his home at 12:27 local time (04:27 GMT) on Tuesday, his wife, Lilian Tintori, wrote on Twitter.

A video posted showed him being taken away by members of the Venezuelan intelligence service, Sebin.

Lilian Tintori wrote that she would hold President Nicolas Maduro responsible if something were to happen to her husband.

The daughter of Ledezma, Vanessa Ledezma, also posted a video of her father, wearing pajamas, being taken away by the Sebin.

A woman can be heard shouting “They’re taking Ledezma, they’re taking Ledezma, dictatorship!”

Both Ledezma and Lopez were key figures in the wave of protests which swept through Venezuela in 2014 in which 43 people from both sides of the political divide were killed.

They have played a less prominent role in the most recent protests because they have been under house arrest but their video messages still get reported and shared widely on opposition websites.


Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints