Venezuela: Authorities Make Six Arrests Over Drone Attack

The Interior Minister of Venezuela has revealed that authorities have made six arrests over Saturday’s drone attack. Nestor Reverol explained that the people arrested are part of a group that placed explosives on two drones.

The explosions happened during a military parade on Saturday. State channels were broadcasting Maduro’s speech to the military when an explosion is heard in the background. The military officials standing next to him look confused but one of them covers a high ranked military official that’s next to him.

In the video, the first lady also appears to be confused by what’s going on. The group standing next to the president continue to look upwards before the transmission cuts to the military parade. A few seconds later, the military is seen running from the area.

Pictures after the explosion show bodyguards protecting Maduro with bulletproof vests. The government quickly blamed the explosion on Colombia which made a response saying the accusation was baseless. The government did not provide any evidence behind its accusation.

Maduro and other officials have also pointed the finger at the opposition and the US. The government often accuses Colombia and others of trying to get Maduro out of power. On Sunday, Defence Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez made a speech on national TV to declare his loyalty to the government.

Details on the incident have raised several doubts on what happened during the military parade. The cameras never showed any explosion since it was focused on Maduro and officials. People living nearby have posted videos of what appears to be the moment when a drone explodes.

Venezuelan authorities have said that the explosions left seven soldiers injured. One picture taken after the incident shows a soldier being carried off with an injury to the head. The AP reports that firefighters have given a different version of the incident. Three firefighters at the scene reportedly said that the incident was actually a gas explosion in an apartment.

Many on social media remain skeptical on what happened at the parade. Some believe the incident was staged by the government to distract from the current economic crisis that has brought record levels of inflation to the country. Others believe the attack was staged to have an excuse to have the military out in the streets and prevent protests from the population struggling from the economic crisis. The IMF recently estimated that inflation  could hit one million percent by the end of 2018.