- Title: Members of Venezuela's opposition clash with police during protest in Tachira
- Date: 23rd January 2017
- Summary: TACHIRA, VENEZUELA (JANUARY 23, 2017) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF PROTESTERS PUSHING AND SHOVING POLICE DURING PROTEST GENERAL VIEW OF POLICE BACKING AWAY FROM PROTESTERS AND FIRING TEAR GAS AT CROWD GENERAL VIEW OF POLICE REFORMING CORDON, TEAR GAS SPREADING PROTESTERS SITTING ON THE GROUND IN FRONT OF POLICE VARIOUS OF POLICE WITH SHIELDS CARACAS, VENEZUELA (JANUARY 23, 2017) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF PROTESTERS BLOCKING TRAFFIC TOP VIEW OF PROTESTERS ON HIGHWAY POLICE BLOCKING PROTESTERS VARIOUS OF PROTESTER TRYING TO HUG POLICE VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS SITTING IN FRONT OF POLICE GENERAL TOP VIEW OF PROTESTERS BLOCKING TRAFFIC
- Embargoed: 6th February 2017 20:04
- Keywords: Venezuela protests opposition politics clashes
- Location: TACHIRA AND CARACAS, VENEZUELA
- City: TACHIRA AND CARACAS, VENEZUELA
- Country: Venezuela
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Civil Unrest
- Reuters ID: LVA00160AZ3UR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Venezuelan opposition protesters clashed with police on Monday (January 23) after launching a new push to force President Nicolas Maduro from power and end 18 years of socialist rule.
Turnout for the opposition's first rallies of 2017 was not massive, reflecting disillusionment over last year's failure to bring about a referendum to recall the 54-year-old leader and successor to Hugo Chavez.
Demonstrators got too close to a police cordon during a protest in Tachira which prompted police to use tear gas on the crowd. The unrest quickly quieted down and the protest remained peaceful, however, tense.
In Caracas, where several thousand opposition supporters marched, some threw empty medicine cartons on the floor to symbolize shortages afflicting the health sector.
With many of Venezuela's 30 million people skipping meals, unable to pay soaring prices for basic goods and facing long lines for scarce subsidized products, Maduro, who won a 2013 election to succeed Chavez, has become deeply unpopular.
Polls showed a majority of Venezuelans wanted a referendum last year which could have brought his rule to an early end and sparked a presidential vote. But compliant courts and election authorities thwarted the move, alleging fraud in signature collections.
The opposition Democratic Unity coalition is demanding dates for regional elections that are supposed to happen this year, and also urging Maduro to hold a new presidential ballot.
Maduro's six-year term is due to end in early 2019.
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