U.S.A.: A Paradise for Violent Crime

According to the Associated Press (AP) violent crimes in the United States grew over the two years in a row.

What period of time did that North American news agency write? The time comprising between 2015 and 2016.

The fact was broadly commented this Monday for its journalist Sadie Gurman.

Revising FBI statistics, she remarked that it grew mainly in the most important cities.

Gurman noticed that Donald Trump used the numbers as evidence that the country is amid a dangerous wave of crimes.

Therefore? The need of making arrests and other sanctions "against drug crimes."

AP remembers that last year there was a blast of shootings and robberies, up to 4,1% more than in 2015.

While homicides of varied nature reached 8,6% in that same time.

The source aforementioned turned to last year statistics to highlight that violence jumped to 3.9%, and murders to more than 10.

"This is a concerning tendency that threatens to thwart the advances that made safer our neighborhoods and communities", said the secretary of Justice, Jeff Sessions.

He also sentenced: the years of crime reduction have been replaced by increases.

The website Público.es recently informed in Madrid that two years ago nearly 1134 people were killed in the U.S., mostly black people.

An investigation of the British newspaper 'The Guardian' revealed that the youths of that community have nine times more probabilities of getting killed at the hands of the Police than at the hands of anyone else.

Scary no doubt, the United States has become, by its own right, a paradise for violent crimes.

Amilkal Labañino Valdés / Cubasi Translation Staff

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Venezuelan Foreign Minister Denounces CIA Interference

CIA Director Mike Pompeo revealed the U.S. advises Mexico and Colombia on how to manipulate the outcome in Venezuela.

Venezuela’s foreign minister condemned CIA schemes to overthrow the government of President Nicolas Maduro, denouncing the CIA’s dealings with foreign governments such as Mexico and Colombia to manipulate events in Venezuela.

RELATED: Ambassador to Mexico Says Venezuela Needs No 'Tutelage'

Samuel Moncada took to Twitter, posting notes from a question posed by Vanessa Neumann, president of Asymmetrica — a business intelligence firm — to CIA Director Mike Pompeo during an extended briefing, where Pompeo said, "We are very hopeful that there can be a transition in Venezuela and we the CIA is doing its best to understand the dynamic there."

"The head of the CIA says he works with Colombia and Mexico to overthrow the democratic government of Venezuela."

Pompeo added, “America has a deep interest in making sure that (Venezuela) is stable, as democratic as possible ... The Colombians, I was just down in Mexico City and in Bogota a week before last talking about this very issue trying to help them understand the things they might do so that they can get a better outcome for their part of the world and our part of the world.”

Following a U.N. meeting with the chief of staff of the U.N. Secretary General in New York City, Moncada said he alerted the official of U.S. maneuvers to destroy democracy in Venezuela.

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A la Jefa de gabinete del SG-ONU, explicamos las violaciones al derecho internacional por parte de EEUU contra el pueblo venezolano.

"We explain the violations of international law by the United States against the Venezuelan people to the Chief of Staff of the SG-UN."

Moncada called the pending threats from President Donald Trump to take “take strong and swift economic actions” in the event that the National Constituent Assembly election vote takes place on July 30 as “anti-democratic, unhumanitarian, and imperialistic."

Moncada also accused U.S. intelligence of organizing violent demonstrations and spurring on the opposition.

The diplomat commented that Venezuela hopes to work with the United Nations under the foundation of respect and cooperation to counter the matrix that has been built against Venezuela.

Vice President of Parlasur Daniel Caggiani also emphasized Monday the importance of not intervening in the "internal situation" in the country. "Venezuela is of concern to us, but I think it is not good for the bloc itself to comment on the internal situation in the South American country," he said to Radio Uruguay.

Caggiani highlighted the role Uruguay played as mediator at the last Mercosur summit Friday, refusing to sign a statement condemning Venezuela.

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So How Many Did Vote in Venezuela's Opposition Plebiscite?

A teleSUR investigation shows how one person could vote three times.

There's no doubt there was a significant turnout for the Venezuelan opposition's informal plebiscite Sunday, which the electoral authorities classified as a political gesture with no constitutional status.

RELATED: Accused of Inciting Violence, Ex-Mexican President Fox Not Welcomed in Venezuela

The opposition said 7,186,170 people voted to reject the Venezuelan government's plan to elect a new Constituent Assembly — that includes 6,492,381 inside Venezuela and 693,789 at voting stations set up for Venezuelans in other countries.

But even if these numbers are accurate — which can't be verified — an estimated 7.2 million votes out of an eligible voting population of just under 20 million is no mandate and even falls short of the 7.7 million the opposition garnered in the 2015 national assembly elections.

But since this was an informal vote, with no register of eligible electors and only a rudimentary record of who voted and where these numbers are almost impossible to verify. At the end of the day, at least some of the opposition voting centers burned their ballot boxes, making any subsequent investigation equally impossible.

However, teleSUR journalists were able to carry out a simple test that suggested the real number of voters was probably less.

They accompanied a citizen who was registered to vote in the Valles del Tuy — a poor suburb on the outskirts of the capital — to the upscale opposition stronghold of eastern Caracas and recorded how he was able to vote multiple times with no problem.

First, they went to a voting station next to the Unicentro El Marques shopping mall. Here are the pictures of him voting.

The organizers asked to see his identity card but did not check it against any list of eligible voters in that district. They just noted his name on a list, along with his ID number, his signature and their own stamp. Then they gave him a voting slip and invited him to fill it in, in front of them, and then put it in the ballot box. Not exactly a secret ballot. And the voting slip had no unique identification to ensure it couldn't be duplicated. After he'd finished, they gave him a receipt to show he had voted.

Then the teleSUR team went with him to another polling station at Romulo Gallegos Avenue in front of Miranda park. The same voter went through the same process and put his voting slip in the box.

The final stop was a voting station outside the Chacaito metro station. The only difference here was that after he voted he was not given a receipt of voting.

The whole process took just an hour.

So the obvious question is, how many others might have voted three times? Or even more times?

There is a video of the citizen casting his second and third votes.

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US Black Group Lauds Caricom's Stance on Venezuela

The IBW urged Caricom nations to resist pressure from Washington and the OAS, and continue to stand firm in their principled position concerning Venezuela.

On Saturday, New York-based Institute of the Black World 21st Century (IBW) said it was “very concerned about reports of racist violence by right-wing, anti-Government forces targeting members of the Afro-Venezuelan community.”

RELATED: Morales Slams Supporters of Venezuela's Opposition Plebiscite

IBW called on the U.S. Congressional Black Caucus to investigate these reports and to support the Caribbean Community's (Caricom) position by demanding that U.S. President Donald Trump's Administration “cease and desist interfering in Venezuela's domestic affairs, and in undermining its national sovereignty.”

The group also condemned recent efforts by the Organization of American States' (OAS) Secretary General Luis Almagro and a “small group of powerful states in the OAS who are relentlessly attacking the Venezuelan Government, openly supporting the Opposition forces, and are attempting to divide and weaken the solidarity of the 15 Caricom member states of the OAS on their stance towards the crisis in Venezuela.”

IBW lauded the prime minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, for upholding “Article 15 of the OAS Charter, which says that 'no state, or group of states, has the right to intervene, directly or indirectly, for any reason whatever, in the internal or external affairs of any other state.'”

The OAS Charter says “this principle prohibits not only armed force but also any other form of interference or attempted threat against the personality of the State or against its political, economic, and cultural elements.”

The Institute of the Black World 21st Century urged all Caricom countries to “resist pressure from Washington and from the OAS, and continue to stand firm in their united and principled position concerning the crisis in Venezuela.”

In a statement from the conclusion of recently concluded 38th Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of Caricom, held in Grenada earlier this month, Caricom leaders “reaffirmed their guiding principles of adherence to the rule of law, respect for human rights and democracy, as well as for the fundamental principles of non-intervention and non-interference in the internal affairs of states.”

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Venezuela: Opposition Protesters Burn Motorcyclist Alive at Barricade

More than 80 people have been killed or seriously injured since opposition protests started in April.

One man was killed and another left with severe burns after opposition protesters attacked a truck driver with molotov cocktails in Zulia State, Venezuela on Wednesday.

RELATED: Ignoring Opposition Attack, US Calls for ‘Pressure’ on Maduro

The national director of Civil Protection, Jorge Galindo, reported Thursday that one death and two bystanders were seriously injured as a result of a protest in Maracaibo.

According to a victim of the attack, the truck attempted to avoid being attacked at the barricade and collided into a motorcycle behind the vehicle, trapping the motorcyclist under the truck before protesters threw the petrol bombs.

"We came across the barricade .. and those who had blocked the way began throwing stones at us to loot the truck and when we went in reverse, we hit the motorcycle," said Jose Bravo, who was in the passenger seat of the truck.

“(The motorcyclist) lay injured on the road and then they threw Molotov bombs at us and set the truck on fire. The boy burned to death and my colleague and I were rescued," Bravo continued.

Bravo, 33, suffered third-degree burns to 95 percent of his body, was sent to the Coromoto Hospital’s Burn Unit to receive treatment.

The motorcyclist was identified as 20 years old Luigin Paz.

The roadblocks closing down a main road near the city’s bridge were organized by anti-government groups answering a nationwide protest call by opposition leaders from the MUD coalition.

MARACAIBO: Resultó con 95 % de QUEMADURAS en su cuerpo el cddno José Bravo (33) quien trató de esquivar una barricada y le arrojaron molotov.

Through its official Twitter account the Attorney General's office indicated that investigation had been called.

The opposition MUD coalition had called for a "national shutdown" Wednesday, with small numbers across most of the country cutting off access to roads for four hours as a protest against the National Constituent Assembly called by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

Many of protests which have transpired since April have spiralled out of control, leaving more than 80 deaths in its wake. On several occasions President Maduro has called for the cessation of violence and dialogue as a way to resolve the conflict, however, MUD has rejected this possibility and has maintained its calls for street protests.

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Countries Around the World Condemn Attack in Venezuela

Widespread support resounded from 17 African countries, as well as Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Cuba, Palestine, and Turkey after the attacks.

In the aftermath of the helicopter attack against the Venezuelan Supreme Court, countries around the world have expressed their solidarity with Venezuela by condemning the acts that the Bolivarian government has described as “terrorist.”

RELATED: Soft Coups Made in USA to Control Latin America: Bolivia

The countries include Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Cuba, Palestine, Turkey, as well as widespread support from Africa where 17 countries have condemned the attacks.

The Bolivian government issued a communication insisting on the importance of peace and dialogue between Venezuela's internal political forces, and called for the preservation of stability.

The Ecuadorean government released a communication calling for “unrestricted respect for the democratic order of states, the peaceful resolution of conflicts, non-interference in a coutnry's internal affairs, and the rejection of attempts toward destabilization.

Guatemala also condemned the attacks and called for sincere political dialogue in Venezuela.

A former police official stole a helicopter on Tuesday afternoon, from the Generalisimo Francisco de Miranda airbase in the Venezuelan capital, and proceeded to fly over over and attack the Supreme Court of Justice and Interior Ministry buildings with grenades. Nobody was injured in the attack.

The Venezuelan Foreign Minister Samuel Moncada described the attack as an “act of terrorism,” and has thanked the countries who have condemned the attack for their displays of solidarity.

Moncada denounced the complicity of those countries and international organizations such as the OAS who have failed to condemn the attacks after months of international attempts to interfere in Venezuela's internal affairs.

In the day following the attacks, the United States has not condemned the attacks. Rather U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley called for increased “pressure” on Venezuelan President Maduro while speaking to the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee.

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Venezuela Omdusman Slams 'Dangerous' Rise in Politically Motivated Hate Crimes

At least 86 people have died since opposition-led protests aimed at toppling the government began.

Venezuela’s ombudsman, Tarek William Saab, denounced on Sunday the rise in far-right hate crimes as the opposition calls for an escalation of protests against the government that have claimed the lives of over 80 people.

RELATED: Venezuelan Youth Burned for 'Being Chavista' Dies from Injuries

"Hate crimes, like lynchings, motivated by political reasons advance dangerously and with impunity in the country," Saab said.

He published a series of videos showing how a group of people protesting in the Tamanaco Commercial Center, CCCT in the capital city of Caracas tried to attack a woman and chased her down the mall. She was mistaken for Marlene de Andrade, the wife of Winston Vallenilla, the president of the state-run television station, TVes.

"We are struggling to change a country, where there is tolerance and all of us who think differently can live and facts like these do much harm. The lady here is a worker who was just doing an errand and she did not deserve this aggression," an unknown person is heard saying next to the woman in another video, in what appears to be bathroom inside the mall.

"What would have happened if the mob that chased this lady in the CCCT had managed to lynch her? Applauding this is condemnable," said Saab on Twitter.

At least 86 people have died since opposition-led protests aimed at toppling the government began, despite calls by President Nicolas Maduro for dialogue with opposition sectors. On May 1, President Maduro invoked the legal mechanism allowing him to call for a Constituent Assembly as a means to quell the unrest through a process that would include citizens in the writing of a new constitution for the South American nation. 

In addition to those killed, over 1,200 have been injured in the protests.

RELATED: Opposition Violence Suspected Behind Killing of Venezuelan Judge

Saab also accused the country's right-wing opposition of being behind recent attacks and threats against his family last week. He said some 30 people carrying flags of the opposition party Justice First attacked his family and threatened to burn their house down.

"Seeking aggression with intentions to injure or kill a human being because of their ideological stance is disgusting," Saab wrote on his Twitter account. "The justice system has can stop this despicable phenomenon that if it were to continue with impunity, would be the prologue of a civil war."

Saad denounced last week that opposition sectors have attacked eight of the headquarters of the Ombudsman's Office across the country, including an incident on Saturday when a "group of hooded men sprayed gasoline" at the headquarters in the city of San Cristobal "and attacked it with blunt objects."

Among the most shocking case of hate crime was the lynching of Orlando Figuera, who was burned alive on May 20 in affluent Caracas neighborhood of Altamira, reportedly because opposition protesters suspected that the 21-year-old Black man was a government supporter.

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Venezuela Opposition 'Escalates' Anti-Government Protests, Remains Silent on Right-Wing Violence

President Nicolas Maduro has accused right-wing opposition leaders of being complicit in fatal violence with their silence. 

Right-wing leaders in Venezuela have called for an escalation of protests as a fresh set of marches for and against the government are set to hit the streets Monday and political tensions continue to run high after nearly two months of opposition demonstrations aimed at forcing President Nicolas Maduro out of office.

RELATED: Venezuelan Opposition Mob Beats Retired National Guard to Death

Opposition groups will march in Caracas towards the Ombudsman’s office Monday, while government supporters will head toward the Miraflores Presidential Palace under the banner of “Peace, Life and Constituent Assembly.”

Ahead of the latest round of opposing demonstrations, opposition leader and vice president of the National Assembly, Freddy Guevara, called on supporters to “get ready for an escalation,” saying anti-government groups will “significantly” increase “pressure” in the streets against Maduro.

Meanwhile, opposition leader Henrique Capriles, head of the opposition Justice First party who lost the last two presidential elections while representing the opposition MUD coalition, stoked the opposition protests — which have increasingly spilled over into violence — by accusing the government of being responsible for violence.  

“The government’s hand is behind the burned buses, the barricades, the acts of vandalism,” Capriles said, according to Venezuela’s El Universal.

A total of 51 buses were burned last week in an attack on a transport company in Puerto Ordaz. Capriles took to Twitter after the incident to blame the government, writing, “They burn, loot, destroy everything to try to detract from the legitimate protest of the people.” On the other hand, the ruling socialist party governor in the state of Bolivar, Francisco Rangel, slammed as an opposition “terrorist act” on his Twitter account.

Maduro called on the opposition Sunday to condemn such “terrorist acts,” accusing right-wing leaders of generating violence.

“The opposition, by silence, is complicit in criminal terrorism that murders innocent people in the streets,” the president said in his weekly program, arguing that it has been already made clear that the opposition is to blame for violence. “The ultra-right is held hostage by terrorist groups that they themselves created.”

RELATED: Venezuelan Women Debate Constituent Assembly Proposals

More than 60 people have been killed in incidents linked to protests since the opposition launched an ongoing wave of anti-government demonstrations at the beginning of April, according to government officials. In the latest violent incident, a former member of the National Guard was beaten to death by an opposition mob Saturday in the state of Lara in what Maduro condemned as a “hate crime … by a group of criminals, murderers, violent protesters.”

Although the dozens of people killed amid protests have died from a range of different causes — including at least 18 shot by assailants during protests, 13 killed during looting, eight killed at violent barricades, and five killed by police — right-wing leaders have painted the death toll as the result of a violent crackdown on the opposition marches by government forces.

Monday’s opposition march claims to be in memory of those “fallen” in recent weeks of protests, but leaders have failed to condemn the violence that has repeatedly broken out in the ranks of its supporters during demonstrations.

“Today May 29 begins another stage of greater constitutional pressure,” Capriles wrote on his Twitter account. “We Venezuelans want answers and solutions to the crisis!”

The opposition has rejected Maduro’s national Constituent Assembly — called to initiate a democratic process to rewrite the country’s constitution and promote dialogue as solution to the intense political deadlock. Instead, right-wing leaders have called for an “escalation” of protests against the socialist government.   

Maduro described the Constituent Assembly Sunday as a process of "revolutionary change" and a "great power" for a "new stage" in Venezuela.

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