When explosions were heard Tuesday night in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas, it was unclear exactly what was happening and who was responsible for the attack. Details are still being sorted out.
Reports quote unidentified officials saying a rogue faction of Venezuela’s police department dropped grenades from a helicopter on the country’s Supreme Court. Other reports say men in a stolen police helicopter fired on Venezuela’s Supreme Court and Interior Ministry.
The New York Times reports:
“A video shot from a window and posted on Twitter shows a helicopter swooping in a circle around a building as explosions are heard.
“Another video posted on social media on Tuesday showed a uniformed man identified as Oscar Pérez, flanked by masked, heavily armed men in uniforms, taking responsibility for the operation. The speaker said he represented a coalition of military, police and civilian personnel who opposed what he called “this transitional, criminal government.”
President Nicolás Maduro, who happened to be speaking live on state television at the time of the incident, said a “terrorist attack” aimed at ousting him from power had been thwarted.
Opponents of Maduro accuse him of orchestrating the attack to justify a crackdown on Venezuelans who are trying to block his plans to rewrite the constitution.