Violent demoes come one day after Nicolas Maduros government barred Henrique Capriles from operating for office for 15 years

Police in Venezuela have burnt tear gas and rubber bullets at some of the thousands of objectors who ran into the streets of Caracas on Saturday amid a weeklong complain motion that shows little sign of losing steam.

Thousands of people, some carrying signs reading Dictator Maduro! and Elections now! in support of banned opposition leader Henrique Capriles, took part in processions across the country against unpopular leftist president Nicols Maduro.

The demoes in the capital and several other cities arrived a period after Maduros government barred Capriles from operating for office for 15 years.

The ban capped a tumultuous 10 day-crackdown that appreciated pro-government groups assault several opposition leaders.

The complains were triggered by the Supreme Courts decision to gut the opposition-controlled legislature of its last vestiges of power, a move that was later overruled amid widespread international censure and even dissent within Maduros ordinarily disciplined socialist leadership.

Nobody can disqualify the Venezuelan people, an emotional Capriles said from a stage Saturday as he called on objectors to march to the ombudsmans office downtown.

As the sea of objectors approached the headquarters of state-run PDVSA oil company, they were met by rubber bullets and a drapery of eye-scorching tear gas.

Mayhem ensued, with riot police racing down windy streets, dodging objects hurled from tall apartment buildings as they deployed to squash the unrest.
Later, a small group of youths unsuccessfully tried to set fire to a Supreme Court office building.

The violence was condemned by the opposition leadership, who nonetheless blame Maduros obstinacy for fuelling the unrest.

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A demonstrator walk while building a fire on the street during a rallying in Caracas. Photograph: Carlos Garcia Rawlins/ Reuters

They called for another complain on Monday. But with Caracas shutting down for the Easter holiday which Maduro extended by decree for three extra days they appeared to be saving their strength for a major demonstration called for 19 April.

At least 17 people were treated for harms, according to Ramon Muchacho, a Caracas-area mayor where the demonstration took place.

Around most of Caracas, checkpoints were established in order to search vehicles and frisk bus passengers even miles away from the conflicts. As nighttime fell, many streets still reeked of tear gas and a small group of youth burned junk and tore down street signs at busy intersections in eastern Caracas.

Zain Khan (@ ZKhanOfficial)

Venezuelans are no longer afraid! Protesters induce the police back down in Caracas #Venezuela #VzlaEnLuchaYResistencia pic.twitter.com/ ZF4M8l3pXM

April 8, 2017

As the most dominant figure in the opposition over the past decade, Capriles has been at the vanguard of the complains, the most combative since a wave of anti-government unrest in 2014 in which dozens of people were killed, many at the hands of security forces.

The almost-daily churn of events in what the opposition calls an ongoing takeover by the government has energised and united the normally fractious opposition.

While opposition leaders have insisted on peaceful protest, annoyance built up over 17 years of polarising socialist rule in Venezuela is operating high on both sides.

The objectors on Saturday included 26 -year-old Victoria Paez, who sported a baseball cap bearing the slogan Theres a Way! from Capriles 2012 presidential operate against the late Hugo Chavez.

Every day, the government dedicates us more reasons to leave our the house and complain, mentioned Paez, who earns less than $20 a month as a compound engineer. She said shes thinking about joining a sister and scores of college pals who have left the South American country attempting a better life.

Her father, Carlos Paez, was pessimistic about Venezuelas future.

Unfortunately, if there has to be bloodshed for the government to change, it wont be the first time in history, he said.

Read more: https :// www.theguardian.com/ world/ 2017/ apr/ 09/ dictator-maduro-thousands-of-venezuelans-protest-ban-of-opposition-leader