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Tear gas, Molotov cocktails as Venezuela cracks down on demonstrations

Published on Mar 16, 2014 10:36 AM
An anti-government protester throws a tear gas canister back at police during clashes in Caracas on March 15, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

CARACAS (AFP) - Anti-government demonstrators clashed for almost two hours on Saturday with riot police who finally subdued them after President Nicolas Maduro's security forces cracked down.

Venezuela has seen almost daily anti-government demonstrations over violent crime, shortages of essential goods such as toilet paper, and soaring inflation, in the most serious challenge yet for Maduro since he succeeded late socialist-populist Hugo Chavez last year.

At least 28 people have died and 400 have been injured in the student-led protests launched February 4 in San Cristobal, in the west of Venezuela, and later spread to Caracas and several other cities.

There have been 41 investigations opened against police for alleged human rights violations.

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