Venezuela’s opposition leader Juan Guaido condemned a raid by military intelligence agents who searched his detained uncle’s home on Thursday, and vowed he would not bow to government “repression.”
His uncle, Juan Marquez, was arrested February 11 on his return to Venezuela with Guaido at the end of an international tour to drum up international support for his efforts to oust President Nicolas Maduro.
The government alleged Marquez was smuggling explosives into the country on the flight from Portugal, a claim strongly denied by Portuguese authorities.
Guaido denounced the search of his uncle’s residence in Caracas by military counterintelligence agents on Twitter as it was happening, and said it was an attempt to intimidate him.
“If they think we are going to retreat from the path that we have taken and are going to take, they are mistaken. We will move forward,” he said on Twitter.
AFP journalists witnessed officials of the General Directorate of Military Counterintelligence being admitted to the building’s car park by hooded uniformed men.
Outside the residence, opposition lawmaker Delsa Solorzano denounced the search as “completely illegal.”
A lawyer for Marquez, Joel Garcia, said he had been barred from entering the property while the search was taking place.
“I tried to enter and the DGCIM officials didn’t let me in. When they don’t allow a trusted lawyer to accompany them it’s because they came to plant evidence,” Garcia told reporters.
He said Marquez’s wife and two children, aged 12 and five, were in the apartment.
“What is happening is an attack on Juan Guaido, to force him to negotiate, to break his will,” Garcia said.
For over a year, Guaido has used his leadership of the National Assembly to challenge Maduro’s legitimacy, and has won recognition from more than 50 countries as Venezuela’s acting president.
He defied a travel ban to make a three week trip to Europe and the United States to rally support for a cause that has so far failed to budge Maduro from power.
The United States, Guaido’s most powerful backer, has warned of consequences if the opposition leader is arrested. But that has not kept the government from moving against his allies and associates.
Washington condemned Marquez’s arrest, saying he was being held on “preposterous charges.”
© 2020 AFP
Authorities searching for spring breakers who flew from Cabo on private plane with 28 COVID-19 victims
Texas authorities are on the lookout for a group of spring breakers who returned from Cabo San Lucas testing positive for the coronavirus.
According to Alyssa Goard at KXAN News, public health officials announced Tuesday that about a week and a half ago, about 70 students in their 20's flew back to the United States on a chartered plane while others used commercial flights. There are 28 youth from the trip who have tested positive for COVID-19.
"Austin Public Health and UT Health Austin and University Health Services have made contact with every spring breaker onboard the plane using flight manifest from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The 28 confirmed cases are self-isolating at this time. Others are under quarantine while being monitored and tested. The Department of State Health Services has been notified.
Trump’s schedule is empty because he’s spending his days chatting with titans of industry, world leaders, and celebrities
President Donald Trump isn't jetting off aboard Air Force One every few days to preside over MAGA and KAG campaign rallies anymore, now that his pandemic is keeping much of the nation – including the president – at home. World leaders have stopped calling – at least in person – so his televised Oval Office diatribes have come to an end, at least temporarily.
Trump's calendar has been looking pretty empty these days (not a dramatic change from pre-pandemic days.)
Here's Trump's public schedule for tomorrow. (Public schedules don't include all of a president's activities.) pic.twitter.com/dst1Nybqbg
‘Pelosi’s terrible idea’: Critics denounce proposal to give wealthy a tax cut in next stimulus package
"This is almost unbelieveable."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is reportedly set to propose rolling back a cap on tax deductions, which would benefit high-earning Americans, as part of the next step of an economic stimulus package that has already poured trillions into the U.S. economy—much of it going to the richest individuals and corporations in the country.
"This is almost unbelievable," HuffPost senior reporter Emily Peck tweeted in response to the news. "Of all the things to do to help people; she wants to... give upper middle class people a tax break."