Nighttime Repression

Your daily briefing for Wednesday, July 19, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Repression against La Candelaria, Caricuao, El Paraíso, Ruiz Pineda and La Urbina was news last night.

Attacks with all kinds of materials (from tear-gas canisters to unidentified objects) while the protest “offers” for today are better described as a crazy hour instead of a zero hour.

Yesterday, several regions in the country experienced protests that weren’t called by the MUD, and it looks like the script will repeat for today, as if willfulness was better than planning, as if Sunday’s success was a nuisance and anti-politics had so suddenly taken hold that there’s no way they can match spontaneity.

Another recorded cadena

But it was also poorly edited this time around, throwing cold water of Nicolás’ activation of the Council for Defense of the Nation (Codena), allegedly to respond to the United States’ “imperial threat,” after Trump threatened to impose strong and swift economic sanctions should Nicolás follow through with his Constituyente.

Article 323 of the Constitution establishes that Codena must be made up by the president, the vice-president; and the chairs of the TSJ, the Moral Council and the National Assembly, as well as the Defense minister. However, Nicolás called for a wider attendance, ignoring the constitutional mandate, as usual.

He mostly used the long and poorly edited cadena to insult his favorite enemies, to take credit for Colombia’s peace, to denounce a re-colonization of the region and to lie about the death of nurse Xiomara Scott in Catia, calling it fake news and saying that the U.S. was responsible.

Damage control

The cadena was so disastrous that Nicolás had to appear on VTV again, interviewed by his lackey Walter Martínez. The only relevant announcement was the offer of a special emergency justice plan designed by Maikel Moreno (TSJ) with the support of military tribunals, police forces (Reverol) and stowaway Katherine Haringhton, just to mention the Prosecutor’s Office somehow. According to Nicolás, this express justice mechanism that starts today has a single goal: “searching and arresting all conspirators for an exemplary punishment.”

Probably the fact the U.S. State Department now labels Venezuela as a dictatorship plagued with corruption and drug trafficking was so offensive to them that they came up with this genius, showing what post-Constituyente “justice” will be like, boosting political persecution and fulfilling the stance of a jerk like Wilmer Poleo.

New justices

The National Assembly approved the Nominations Committee’s report for the appointment of 13 main justices and 20 deputy justices of the TSJ, to replace those appointed in December, 2015, in an illegal process that openly violated the Constitution. The new justices will be sworn into office on Friday.

The nominations committee sent the Moral Republican Council a list with the 99 nominees reviewed by the National Assembly to challenge sitting justices.

NONE-budsman Tarek William Saab and Comptroller Manuel Galindo rejected the justices’ appointment, calling it “extemporary” and “strongly rejecting the unconstitutional process with which the National Assembly seeks to appoint new justices,” adding that such an appointment disrupts the country’s internal order and encourages foreign intervention.

Additionally, the National Assembly unanimously approved the popular consultation’s results ratifying our disregard for the Constituyente.

Public debt

Lawmaker Alfonso Marquina, member of the AN’s Permanent Committee on Finance and Economic Development, denounced that the government seeks to sell national debt, forcing the financial system to acquire it without the National Assembly’s approval.

This comes in response to the Finance Ministry’s release of its timetables for auctioning National Public Debt bonds and Treasury Notes for the third trimester of 2017, after half a year without selling and with the TSJ’s approval, using the story about Parliament’s alleged contempt to violate the Law of Annual Indebtedness.

In this session, Marquina rejected the Decree of Economic Emergency’s ninth extension and denounced that the Finance Ministry “is forcing the banking system to buy those bonds as part of the Central Bank’s reserve requirements,” saying that these operations are illegal.

Delcy’s heir

Foreign minister Samuel Moncada condemned the United States’ threat of imposing economic sanctions, claiming that he’ll start a profound review of Venezuela’s relations with that nation and calling other countries in the region to “understand the gravity of the brutal threat contained” in their statement and restating that “nothing and noone will be able to stop the Constituyente,” as if Venezuela wasn’t dependant on oil exports, as if the United States wasn’t one of the few clients that pay in cash for the thousands of oil barrels we sell every day.

Moncada should also concern himself with the twenty-something countries that expressed their support for the popular consultation and for the accusation filed by Colombian and Chilean senators before the The Hague’s International Criminal Court against Nicolás, for crimes such as torture and segregation.

Everything happens at the same time

That’s why green alert was declared in the country on Tuesday due to the proximity of the tropical storm Don to Venezuelan coasts. The states under alert were Nueva Esparta, Sucre, Anzoátegui, Miranda, Vargas, Aragua, Carabobo and the Capital District, with moderate to strong rainfall expected for today, so ships and boats wouldn’t be allowed to take to the sea in the western part of the country, as a preventive measure.

Also yesterday, bus drivers announced they’re going on strike in Caracas, Miranda and Vargas starting this Wednesday, July 19th, until the Bs. 300 bus fare is published on Official Gazette, so take your precautions.

The threat of economic sanctions obviously hit them as hard or maybe harder than the popular consultation’s results. Less dollars mean less incentives for groups supporting Nicolás. Yesterday, he didn’t appear strong but anxious.

I still can’t understand why the regime refuses to negotiate, but yesterday was a chaotic day and everything seems to indicate that today will be worse, so we better leave that discussion for another time.

Naky Soto

Naky gets called Naibet at home and at the bank. She coordinates training programs for an NGO. She collects moments and turns them into words. She has more stories than freckles.