Opposition protesters have rallied in Caracas. Their calls to remove the Venezuelan president are taking on a more urgent tone.
It comes a day after the leader announced a state of emergency amid the ongoing economic crisis crippling the country.
Maduro’s opponents warned that if he blocks a an attempt to hold a recall referendum there would be serious consequences.
“Venezuela is a bomb that could explode at any moment. We don’t want the bomb to explode and, because of that, we call on everyone to mobilize in favour of a recall referendum in 2016,” said Henrique Capriles, opposition leader and Miranda State Governor
Pro-government supporters were also out in force as the president threatened to seize paralysed factories and jail their owners, while warning that external forces were threatening to destabilise the country.
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“Next Saturday, I have called for the armed forces and militia to hold national military exercises to prepare us for any scenario because this land is sacred and we should make sure it is respected,” said Nicolas Maduro, President of Venezuela.
Venezuela was once among the most developed nations in Latin America but the economic crisis that started three years ago has immensely affected the day- to-day life of residents in the country.
A key poll indicates nearly 70 percent of Venezuelans now say Maduro must go this year.