courtesy Wiki Commons

Venezuelan protests come to Calgary

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Venezuela has seen a lot of unrest over the past two weeks. Beginning on Feb. 12 — the country’s National Youth Day ­— anti-government protesters lashed out over food shortages, high inflation and the government’s abuse of power.

Calgarians have taken to the streets in solidarity. Mayda Boberly, a Venezuelan student at the University of Calgary, explained the motive behind the protests in Calgary.

“We need the international community to pay attention to what’s going on in Venezuela. There have been violations of human rights and the military is killing students,” Boberly said.

Many of the protestors are students upset with the long rule of the United Socialist Party said Luis Navarro, one of the Calgary protestors.

“Students are tired of the economical problems. Nothing is getting better, everything is getting worse,” Navarro said.

Despite being an oil-rich nation, Venezuela has struggled with staggering poverty, worsened by runaway inflation rates. Businesses need permission to import goods and are limited in their use of foreign exchange. Government critics claim this has caused a shortage of food and medical supplies.

Since the anti-government protests began, violence and killings have escalated, with no signs of calming down.