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Venezuelan soldiers defect as troops fire tear gas at protesters on Colombia border -

Venezuelan soldiers defect as troops fire tear gas at protesters on Colombia borderThree soldiers from the Venezuelan national guard have deserted their posts, according to reports, ahead of a planned opposition-led effort to bring aid into the economically-devastated county. The soldiers have asked for help from neighbouring Colombia's migration agency. President Nicolas Maduro has ordered the Venezuelan military to bar the aid caravan, which is being supported by the opposition, from entering the country. Self-declared acting president Juan Guaido has vowed humanitarian aid would enter Venezuela despite a blockade Credit: AFP Venezuelan forces on Saturday hurled tear gas and fired rubber to break up a crowd demanding to cross the Urena border bridge to Colombia. "We want to work!" people chanted as they faced Venezuelan National Guard riot police blocking the crossing, one of several ordered closed by President Maduro late on Friday. Opposition leader Juan Guaido (L) waves as he arrives with Colombian President Ivan Duque at the "Venezuela Aid Live" concert Credit: AFP Supporters of opposition leader Juan Guaido in Colombia are planning to cross the border carrying emergency supplies into Venezuela. While the need for basic food and medicines is real, the effort is also meant to embarrass military officers who continue to support Mr Maduro's increasingly isolated government. Venezuela | Read more Juan Guaido, recognised by most Western nations as the country's legitimate head of state, defied court orders not to leave Venezuela by arriving on Friday in the Colombian border city of Cucuta, where aid from the US and Colombian governments is stockpiled in warehouses. Mr Maduro blames the country's dire situation on US sanctions that have blocked the country from obtaining financing and have hobbled the OPEC nation's oil industry.  Venezuelan demonstrators clash with security forces in Urena, Venezuela Credit: AFP Concerns about the potential for violence flared on Friday when the Venezuelan army opened fire in an village near the Brazilian border after indigenous leaders attempted to prevent them from advancing, killing a woman and her husband. Otro guardia que se entrega esta vez en el puente de ureña 23FebVenezuelaVenezuelaLibrepic.twitter.com/XTUDJVdYLB— Luis Álvarez (@alvarezluis1999) February 23, 2019 Nearly 200,000 people attended a benefit concert in Cucuta on Friday featuring Latin pop stars, including Luis Fonsi of "Despacito" fame, many of whom called on Maduro to step down. A rival concert held by the ruling Socialist Party on the Venezuelan side was sparsely attended. Mr Guaido in January invoked articles of the constitution to assume interim presidency and denounced Maduro as a usurper, arguing his 2018 re-election was illegitimate. 3:31PM Brazil's humanitarian aid has arrived on the border The first truck with humanitarian aid from the Brazilian government has arrived in the city of Pacaraima on the border with Venezuela. The crossing has been closed on orders from Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and the truck loaded with food and medicine will now wait in Brazilian territory. Brazil's Foreign Minister Ernesto Araujo said he expects Mr Maduro's government to allow the aid to pass. "It is very exciting to see people anxious to recover their freedom and have a decent life," Mr Araujo said. 3:06PM Venezuelan opposition leader arrives at the border The Venezuelan opposition leader has arrived at the border with leaders of neighbours Colombia, Chile and Paraguay. Guaido has arrived at Tienditas bridge, accompanied by the presidents of Colombia, Chile & Paraguay, and the Sec Gen of the Organisation of American States. They’re walking up towards the Venezuelan side, to recce the scene before returning to give speeches and begin the delivery— Harriet Alexander (@h_alexander) February 23, 2019 3:03PM Defected soldiers named We now have the names of three of the four national guard members who defected earlier this morning, Harriet Alexander reports from the border. Three drove two tanks across the Simon Bolivar bridge, shunting the barricades out of the way to hand themselves in. The fourth walked across the Francisco de Paula Santander bridge, to huge applause. The three have been named as  Lt Richard Sánchez Zambrano, Sgt Major Edgar Torres Valera and Sgt Major Oscar Suárez Torres. El momento en el que tres miembros de la Guardia Nacional Bolivariana desertan en el Puente Internacional Simón Bolívar y han solicitado ayuda a Migración Colombia. "¡Libertad!", gritan quienes los ven entrar: https://t.co/lURgwLQDEkpic.twitter.com/cyBbQkUtwW— CNN en Español (@CNNEE) February 23, 2019


Sat, 23 Feb 2019 10:36:51 -0500

Venezuela troops fire tear gas on demo at Colombia border -

Venezuela troops fire tear gas on demo at Colombia borderUreña (Venezuela) (AFP) - Venezuelan forces on Saturday fired rubber bullets and tear gas to break up a crowd demanding to cross a closed border bridge to Colombia, AFP journalists reported. "We want to work!" they chanted while facing the Venezuelan National Guard riot police who were blocking the crossing in Urena, a town in Tachira state. Late on Friday, President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of all four bridges linking Tachira to Colombia.


Sat, 23 Feb 2019 08:51:51 -0500

Venezuelan police fire teargas after clashes break out on border -

Venezuelan police fire teargas after clashes break out on borderPolice fired teargas on Saturday after clashes broke out among Venezuelans trying to cross the border into Colombia, which has been closed by President Nicolás Maduro to block shipments of aid organised by the opposition. The opposition leader and self-declared interim president Juan Guaidó will try to cross into the country on Saturday, with thousands of volunteers carrying food and medical supplies. Venezuelan security forces have been ordered not to let them through.


Sat, 23 Feb 2019 08:45:41 -0500

Palestinians bury teen killed by Israeli gunfire during border protests -

Palestinians bury teen killed by Israeli gunfire during border protestsGaza health officials say the 15-year-old boy was shot by Israeli troops during a protest attended by thousands on the Gaza Strip border. Rough cut (no reporter narration)


Sat, 23 Feb 2019 08:11:59 -0500

Girl banned from wearing MAGA hat claims school is violating her First Amendment rights -

Girl banned from wearing MAGA hat claims school is violating her First Amendment rightsA California high school student who was banned from wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat on campus is challenging her school district for impinging on her First Amendment rights. Maddie Mueller, who attends Clovis North High School in Fresno, is a member of Valley Patriots. The conservative activist group asked its affiliates to wear the well-known hat bearing Donald Trump's campaign motto on Wednesday.


Sat, 23 Feb 2019 07:31:51 -0500


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