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Venezuela: Brazilian Senators Attacked After Trying to Meet Jailed Opposition Leader Leopoldo Lopez


Eight Brazilian senators visiting Venezuela to meet jailed opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez say they had to flee after their bus was attacked.

The Brazilian opposition politicians were trying to meet former mayor Leopoldo Lopez, who is in jail accused of inciting violence during protests.

The senators said the bus was stoned as it travelled from Caracas airport.

Brazil’s foreign ministry says it will seek an explanation from the Venezuelan government.

One of the senators, Ronaldo Caiado, tweeted: “Our bus was under siege; they were beating and trying to break it. I filmed them throwing stones against the bus.”

Another, former presidential candidate Aecio Neves, said: “We are here to defend democracy and until now the Venezuelan government has shown little appreciation of it.”Brazilian senators attacked in Venezuela

The group returned to the airport and is reportedly waiting to go back to Brazil.

The incident occurred a few hours after the senators landed in Caracas airport.

Earlier this month former Spanish PM Felipe Gonzales left Caracas earlier than expected after his attempts to speak to Leopoldo Lopez, who has been in jail for more than a year.

Leopoldo Lopez is accused of inciting violence during protests last year. More than 40 people, from both sides of the political divide, were killed in months of demonstrations against the government of Nicolas Maduro.

President Nicolas Maduro’s government is wary of foreign support of Venezuelan opposition leaders.

The Brazilian Foreign Ministry said hostile acts against its politicians were unacceptable and promised to seek an explanation from Venezuela.

It released a statement June18 saying:“The Brazilian government regrets the incidents that affected this visit to Venezuela.”

“Hostile acts from protesters toward Brazilian lawmakers are unacceptable,” the statement added.