Venezuela’s Maduro said to be in ‘perfect’ health after explosions rock Caracas
Explosions rocked Venezuela’s capital city of Caracas on Saturday, sending the participants of a military parade scrambling in panic and leaving President Nicolas Maduro unharmed, in an attack that apparently targeted the left-wing leader.
Drones loaded with an explosive payload detonated close to where Maduro was giving a speech on Saturday, but he and top government officials alongside him escaped unscathed. Footage that was widely circulated on social media showed several people on the platform reacting to a loud noise, and security forces evacuating Maduro before the large formation dispersed in panic.
While Maduro was speaking about Venezuela’s economy at the event, the audio suddenly went silent. He and others on the podium were shown looking up in fear. Several local reports, which CNBC was not able to immediately verify, said that at least one drone loaded with C4 explosives went off in the general vicinity where the event took place. The perpetrators weren’t immediately identified.
Via Twitter, the Venezuelan president’s press account said that Maduro was prepared to address the nation anew. The president was “in perfect health,” the account tweeted.
Venezuela has been in turmoil for several years, and a wrenching economic crisis has metastasized into political instability. More than a decade of mismanagement and failed social policies have unleashed widespread civil strife and runaway inflation, crushing what was once one of Latin America’s wealthiest countries. The bolivar, the country’s official currency, has become all but worthless, making the U.S. dollar the most valuable unit of exchange.
Maduro was elected in May to a new six-year term in a result widely denounced by the opposition and international observers as illegitimate and rife with irregularities.
–Reuters contributed to this article.