With opposition parties boycotting what they call a rigged election, Reuters reports the streets of Caracas were deserted on Sunday as a minority of Venezuelans trickled to the polls to elect a constitutional super-body that unpopular leftist President Maduro vowed would begin a new era of combat in the crisis-stricken nation. That is good news as, following the death of two people yesterday, shortly after a large group of motorbikes sped through the city, and explosion hit, reportedly injuring a number of police officers.
A number of police officers were injured in Venezuela's capital Caracas after an explosion during an anti-government protest decrying a vote for a constituent assembly on Sunday, according to a Reuters witness.
Further details were not immediately available.
The moment of the explosion...
Social media is awash with clips of injured (it is uncertain if this is from the explosion)...
For now, the fire from the explosion continues...
As a reminder, Reuters reports, Maduro, widely disliked for overseeing an economic collapse during four years in office, has pressed ahead with the vote to create the all-powerful assembly despite the threat of further U.S. sanctions and months of opposition protests in which more than 115 people have been killed. Opposition parties are boycotting what they call a rigged election. Their sympathizers planned protests on highways across the South American country and scuffles were already reported in the provinces - raising the prospect of violent clashes with tens of thousands of troops deployed to safeguard the vote.
Authorities confirmed there were two deaths on Saturday, including the killing of a candidate to the assembly during a robbery, while the opposition put the total death toll in Saturday's protests at five.
Critics say the assembly will allow Maduro to dissolve the opposition-run Congress, delay future elections and rewrite electoral rules to prevent the socialists from being voted out of power in the once-prosperous OPEC nation.
The opposition has vowed to redouble its resistance and U.S. President Donald Trump has promised broader economic sanctions against Venezuela after the vote, suggesting the oil-rich nation's crisis is set to escalate.
"Even if they win today, this won't last long," said opposition supporter Berta Hernandez, a 60-year-old doctor, in a wealthy Caracas district. "I'll continue on the streets because, not long from now, this will come to an end."