Leaders of the ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) are planning on holding a march in the capital Caracas on Friday, October 5. The march is set to begin at 10:00 (local time) at the Attorney General's office before moving towards the city center. The opposition coalition FAVL (Frente Amplio Venezuela Libre) is also calling for nationwide gatherings to be held on the same day outside of state labor offices over long standing labor grievances. This increases the likelihood of clashes between pro- and anti-government groups; there is also the risk of clashes between anti-government protests and security forces/pro-government gangs. Heightened security measures and localized traffic disruptions are expected in Caracas.
In the first half of 2017, Venezuela was shaken by four months of violent anti-government protests, coinciding with ongoing political, economic, social, and health crises. Significant unrest also broke out in 2014 following the last presidential elections and again in early 2016. All told, hundreds of people have been killed during protests - many by security forces who have repeatedly been accused of excessive use of force - with thousands more injured and arrested.
Individuals in Caracas, and Venezuela more generally, are advised to strictly avoid all protests due to the risk of violence and arrest amid high sociopolitical tensions.
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