On Monday, May 4, within the context of a confusing uprising on the Venezuelan coast, Provea (Venezuelan Program for Education and Action in Human Rights) reiterated a series of principles through its social networks, which generated a strong response from high officials of the de facto government.
What did the messages say?
1) In the face of the loss of peaceful means of conflict resolution, Maduro encouraged violence;
2) Provea supports only peaceful mechanisms for the transition to democracy;
3) The international community should reject forced withdrawals, instead relying diplomatic pressure;
4) The people who had been detained in the incidents should not be victims of torture, disappearance or extrajudicial execution.
These messages, or variations of them, had been published on other occasions in recent months. Why did they generate such a furious wave of increased criminality at this point? For now, the answer is: The nature of the conflict is changing dramatically.
The state of emergency order has generated some authoritarian measures that, in other places, we have described as having been " dreamed up " by Bolivarianism as a device for the control of Venezuelans: increasing separation, isolating individuals so that they are incapable of collective action in public space, increasing levels of censorship and self-censorship, militarising the control of the main urban centres, increasing the state control of daily life, as well as eliminating the dissent that was being seen before lockdown.
That is why we have cases of doctors detained for having complained in private conversations about not having the necessary implements in the hospital where they work, or citizens detained for having posted on Instagram their discontent about the shortage of gasoline.
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