Venezuelan President survives apparent drone assassination attempt

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro survived an apparent assassination attempt Saturday after several drones...

Posted: Aug 6, 2018 1:09 AM
Updated: Aug 6, 2018 1:09 AM

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro survived an apparent assassination attempt Saturday after several drones armed with explosives flew toward him during a speech at a military parade.

Live footage of the event showed him suddenly looking up startled mid-speech, while beside him his wife, Cilia Flores, winces after a loud bang.

Continents and regions

Latin America

Nicolas Maduro

Political Figures - Intl

South America

The Americas

Venezuela

Military

Counterterrorism

International relations and national security

National security

Terrorism

Terrorism and counter-terrorism

Unrest, conflicts and war

Colombia

Military operations

Terrorist attacks

Investigations

Juan Manuel Santos

Accidents, disasters and safety

Explosions

Parades and marches

Assassinations

Aircraft

Aviation and aerospace industry

Bombs and explosive devices

Business and industry sectors

Business, economy and trade

Unmanned aircraft

Weapons and arms

Dozens of soldiers are also seen scattering during the event to commemorate the 81st anniversary of the Venezuelan national guard in the capital of Caracas.

Seven members of the national guard were hurt during the attack, which the president blamed on far-right elements and Colombia's outgoing president, Juan Manuel Santos.

A Colombian presidential source told CNN that Maduro's accusations were "baseless."

"I'm alive and victorious," Maduro said in a national television address hours after what he described as an assassination attempt.

The president added that there were two explosions, seconds apart, and that he initially thought they were fireworks as part of the military parade.

Venezuela's Minister of Communication, Jorge Rodriguez, said preliminary information showed the explosions came from several "drone-type flying devices" containing explosive charges that detonated in the vicinity of the presidential stage and in some areas of the parade.

A photo posted on Twitter by Freddy Nanez, head of the Venezuelan state run news channel VTV, shows bodyguards shielding Maduro following the explosions.

Investigation underway

Venezuela's attorney general, Tarek William Saab, told CNN he had ordered an investigation into the incident, assigning three prosecutors to the investigation.

Saab was close to the president during the event, and says the drone responsible for filming the event exploded. He added that a second explosion followed.

During his speech to the nation following the incident, Maduro said the investigation started immediately and that some of those involved in the attack had already been captured and charged, although he did not specify the charges against them.

Speaking in front of members of the military and other government officials, Maduro also said that authorities were able to obtain evidence of the attack and said the investigation was in an advanced stage.

He blamed the Venezuelan political far right in collaboration with the Colombian far right, and the current Colombian President Santos of being behind the assassination attack.

He also blamed Venezuelans living in the US.

"The preliminary investigation indicates that many of those responsible for the attack, the financiers and planners, live in the United States in the state of Florida," Maduro said.

"I hope the Trump administration is willing to fight terrorist groups that commit attacks in peaceful countries in our continent, in this case Venezuela."

The Venezuelan government has long blamed Colombia for plotting overthrows and, and far-right elements in Bogota and Miami for attempting to undercut Maduro. Ivan Duque takes over as the Colombian President next week.

A Colombian presidential source told CNN that Maduro's accusations were "baseless," adding Santos was "dedicated to his granddaughter's Celeste baptism, and not taking down foreign governments."

A senior US State Department official traveling with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Indonesia said the US "had heard the reports," and was following closely.

How the remarkable attack unfolded

The military parade took over most of the Avenida Bolivar, one of the main thoroughfares in Caracas, and the president's speech came toward the end of the event.

Video broadcast live on Venezuelan state-run news channel, VTV, showed Maduro talking about an economic recovery, when the audio cuts mid sentence.

Cilia Flores, Maduro's wife, was standing next to him. She looks up and winces.

Shortly after, VTV shows video of soldiers and National Guardsman scattering along the avenue.

Manuel Berbín lives nearby and told CNN en Español that he and his wife thought the first explosion were fireworks.

"We heard the first explosion, and we were there thinking that it could have been a firework that exploded close to our apartment" he said. "Then we heard the second explosion, that was very strong. We went to the window, and at that time we saw the soldiers start to run, they started to move the cars quickly, the sirens started going."

Berbin says he saw smoke rising from the area shortly after.

He adds the explosions were very close to each other.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 24190

Reported Deaths: 1036
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin8181606
Ramsey2863122
Stearns201413
Nobles15125
Anoka136370
Dakota126354
Washington61731
Olmsted60810
Kandiyohi4901
Rice4522
Clay42426
Scott4082
Todd3130
Wright3051
Mower3031
Sherburne2372
Carver2062
Benton1753
Steele1590
Blue Earth1380
Martin1295
St. Louis11814
Freeborn1150
Pine890
Nicollet8610
Unassigned8610
Winona7915
Carlton730
Watonwan710
Cottonwood700
Crow Wing682
Goodhue663
Otter Tail640
Chisago611
Polk612
Itasca5410
Dodge520
Chippewa491
Lyon490
Morrison450
Meeker450
Le Sueur441
Douglas410
Becker390
Jackson390
Murray390
McLeod340
Isanti320
Waseca260
Rock220
Mille Lacs191
Faribault180
Swift180
Wabasha180
Fillmore171
Pennington170
Sibley160
Brown152
Beltrami140
Cass132
Norman130
Pipestone120
Kanabec111
Wilkin113
Marshall100
Pope90
Wadena90
Aitkin80
Koochiching70
Yellow Medicine60
Mahnomen61
Lincoln50
Renville50
Big Stone40
Grant40
Red Lake40
Redwood40
Clearwater30
Hubbard30
Traverse30
Lac qui Parle30
Roseau30
Houston20
Lake10
Kittson10
Stevens10

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 19217

Reported Deaths: 531
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk4160125
Woodbury274034
Black Hawk173944
Linn94976
Dallas89220
Marshall89216
Buena Vista7350
Johnson6149
Wapello5589
Muscatine55641
Crawford5142
Tama40227
Scott35810
Dubuque34518
Louisa34311
Jasper26116
Pottawattamie2578
Sioux2190
Washington1888
Wright1670
Plymouth1292
Warren1260
Allamakee1204
Story1091
Mahaska9310
Poweshiek908
Henry711
Bremer696
Des Moines621
Clinton611
Boone610
Taylor540
Clarke530
Guthrie503
Cedar461
Benton411
Webster391
Monroe385
Shelby370
Jones360
Hamilton350
Clayton343
Iowa330
Buchanan330
Osceola330
Marion320
Cerro Gordo281
Cherokee280
Madison282
Fayette270
Lee250
Winneshiek240
Monona240
Jefferson230
Harrison220
Davis210
Lyon210
Dickinson200
Grundy200
Mills190
Floyd191
Sac180
Humboldt170
Lucas170
Hardin160
Hancock160
Delaware150
Keokuk150
Clay150
Appanoose153
Butler151
Emmet140
Ida140
Page130
Greene130
Franklin130
Cass120
Howard120
Audubon121
Jackson120
Winnebago110
Pocahontas110
Chickasaw100
Carroll90
Van Buren90
Adair90
Kossuth90
Union70
Adams70
Montgomery70
Palo Alto60
Unassigned60
Fremont40
Mitchell40
Ringgold40
Worth30
Calhoun20
Wayne10
Decatur10
Rochester
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 61°
Mason City
Overcast
65° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 65°
Albert Lea
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 66°
Austin
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 66°
Charles City
Clear
64° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 64°
Sunnier skies for the weekend
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Rochester People's Rally

Image

Religious leaders call for justice for George Floyd

Image

Rochester downtown under curfew Saturday night

Image

Sean Weather 5/30

Image

Governor Walz GivesUpdate

Image

Gov. Walz Addresses Minnesotans in Overnight Press Conference

Image

Riots, Fires continue in Minneapolis

Image

Protesters in Downtown Rochester

Image

Mower County Fair will go on as planned

Image

Minneapolis Gas Stations Shut Down

Community Events