Tuesday, September 01, 2009

VENEZUELA further sliding down towards tyranny (link in Spanish, my translation):
Some 2,220 people have been prosecuted in Venezuela for participating in demonstrations against President Hugo Chávez and his policies, or for protesting the poor functioning of public services, according to figures released today by the NGO Venezuelan Program of Action and Education (Provea). Blocking a street to protest the lack of water or poor conditions of schools or to express the rejection against the Government are some of the causes that have led to the opening of these court proceedings, reports local newspaper El Universal.

According to Provea's coordinator, Marino Alvarado, the Attorney is criminalizing protests with the excuse that these people "disrupt public peace." Alvarado criticized the measures taken by the Attorney General Luisa Ortega to initiate criminal investigations against the 120 university students who demonstrated against Chavez government's decision to revoke the license to RadioCaracas Television (RCTV) in May 2007 .

The Provea coordinator said that "these figures are conservative, because there are cases like the protests in townships and villages, which do not come to light. There are many community organizers under prosecution for protesting."
Community organizers? Will Obama show sympathy to his colleagues?