Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, speaking shortly after an attempted attack during his Saturday public address, has said some of the perpetrators have already been captured.
Maduro, without any sign of injury, delivered a televised address about two hours after his public speech at a military event was interrupted by loud explosions. Venezuelan officials said explosive drones were detonated near the president in a failed assassination attempt.
Describing the incident, Maduro said a flying object exploded in front of him.
"I thought it was a pyrotechnic fire, in a matter of micro seconds there was a second explosion to my right. You could see people running because they felt the shockwave," he said.
An investigation into the incident has been launched and some of the suspected perpetrators apprehended, according to Maduro. The president accused far-right opposition and external actors.
"I have no doubt that everything points to the Venezuelan ultra-right in alliance with the Colombian extreme right, and the name of [Colombian President] Jose Manuel Santos is behind this attack," he said.
Maduro also claimed that the first results of the investigation show that several of those who paid for the attack reside in Florida, US.
The Venezuelan president said the attack has made him even more determined to continue on his course of "recovery, growth and prosperity," which would help "turn around" the country's ailing economy.
Venezuela's economy is in dire straits, with hyperinflation heading for a dismal 1,000,000 percent by end of year. The US has been pressuring the country with sanctions and leveraging its allies to do the same, claiming Maduro is a dictator who came to power illegitimately and is starving his people. US President Donald Trump has openly considered a military option against Venezuela, and calls for a coup have made it to the headlines of US mainstream media.
There have been violent opposition protests in Venezuela, which Maduro believes are being instigated from abroad.
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