Independent Venezuelan Journalists Arrested by Maduro’s Regime

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ICBHR – On the evening of April 15th, Venezuelan journalist Eduardo Galindo was arrested by members of dictator Nicholas Maduro’s armed forces, from the Anti-Extortion and Kidnapping unit, at his apartment in the city of San Fernando de Apure. As he was being taken away to a military detention center, Galindo managed to record a video of himself, that associates were able to have posted to Twitter, where the journalist says that he had been handed a subpoena charging him with a crime on account of an article he had written for his website, Sendero de Apure.

Two hours later, soldiers returned to Galindo’s apartment intending to confiscate his computer and mobile phones. After his wife and brother refused to open the door for the soldiers, they broke in and arrested the journalist’s two family members as well. Three are now being held at the regional headquarters of Venezuela’s National Guard. Officials have declined to issue any public statement on the arrest, nor have they provided any search warrant or criminal charge against Galindo.

According to Venezuela’s National Union of Press Workers, Galindo’s arrest was on account of videos he had posted to social media, where he discussed the shortages of gasoline in his locality. The country has been suffering under severe fuel shortages in recent months, due both to the Maduro regime’s incompetent mismanagement of the state-run petroleum industry, and to US sanctions that have blocked most imports.

The day before, April 14th, Arnaldo Sumoza, the director of a TV station in El Sombrero, along with two members of an opposition party, was arrested after recording and showing videos of an anti-regime protest that was held over the lack of water in the municipality. The National Guard announced that the three would be charged with “instigating hate.”

News of the arrests sparked condemnations from international human rights organizations, such as the Committee to Protect Journalists, and also from the U.S. State Department.

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