The Caracas barrio of Petare is one of the world’s most dangerous places in the world. In just the first week of 2014, more than 70 people have been murdered in barrios like this one throughout the country. The latest bout of violence has brought fresh criticism against the colectivos.
Despite the death of one of their own in the recent demonstrations, the colectivo’s have become a symbol to many of the lawlessness affecting the country, well armed, tied to the government, the opposition see them as Maduro own paramilitary force . The collectivos claim however they are providing their communities with much needed security. They remain loyal to former Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and openly defend his revolution.
While there seems that there is little hope of reaching an agreement on what caused last week’s violence, it seems certain the causes that led to the protests in the first place will not go away anytime soon.
Correspondent Martin Markovits reports on a nation divided from Caracas.
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