Reports indicate that on November 21 violent incidents were recorded in Caracas, as a student march headed from Venezuelan Central University (UCV) to Las Tres Gracias Square scuffled with security forces. According to reports, approximately 400 students were conducting a demonstration against the government, on occasion of Student’s Day, when security forces including an anti-riot police squad and military units stood in their way. While students scuffled with security agents, riot police evicted them with tear gas and rumble bombs. Meanwhile, a pro-government demonstration headed to Miraflores Presidential Palace took place without incidents.
Venezuela continues to experience periodical unrest across urban areas. Recent years have witnessed a significant increase in the government’s willingness to repress dissent through forceful actions, including violence on the part of security forces tasked with curtailing street protests. This leads opposition activists to claim security agencies have no regards for human rights. As the overall situation in the country becomes more unstable due to the ongoing economic crisis, further acts of violence and unrest will most likely continue to take place going forward. International pressure in the form of sanctions has thus far proved ineffective in preventing authorities from exercising political intimidation against critics, and the government is unlikely to change course, thus making further crackdown on the opposition and protest movements likely.