Venezuela President Survives Assassination Attempt

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Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro says he has survived an assassination attempt involving explosive drones.

Maduro was speaking at a military event in Caracas when the alleged attack occurred. Live footage of Maduro’s speech shows the president suddenly looking upwards – startled – and dozens of soldiers running away. Maduro has blamed Colombia for the attack – something denied by Bogota as a “baseless” accusation. Seven soldiers were injured, and several people were later arrested, the Venezuelan authorities said. The incident happened when Maduro was speaking at the event to mark the 81st anniversary of the national army. Two drones loaded with explosives went off near the president’s stand, Communications Minister, Jorge Rodriguez said. Maduro later said in a national address: “A flying object exploded near me, a big explosion. Seconds later there was a second explosion.” Photos on social media showed bodyguards protecting Maduro with bulletproof shields after the alleged attack. Maduro accused neighbouring Colombia and elements within the US of instigating “a right-wing plot” to kill him. He added that he had “no doubt” Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos was “behind this attack”. The Venezuelan leader, who has previously accused the US of plotting against him, provided no evidence to back his claim. The Colombian government has denied any involvement, saying there is “no basis” to Maduro’s allegations.   BBC
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