22 Feb 2014

Protests continue in Venezuela

11:32 pm on 22 February 2014

At least nine people have died in Venezuela in the wave of protests against the leftist government of President Nicolas Maduro, officials say.

At least 137 people have also been wounded and 104 have been detained in the two weeks of protests, Attorney General Luisa Ortega said on a radio show.

He says says the latest victim was a 29-year-old man who tried to cross a street blockaded by protesters on a motorcycle at night time.

In the darkness the rider did not see a cable that the protesters had strung up and it sliced his throat.

Five of the victims died in Caracas, including three from gunshot wounds during a massive 12 February anti-government rally that led to clashes between protesters, security forces and pro-government militias.

The fatalities also include a beauty queen shot in the head during opposition protests in the north-central state of Carabobo.

Among the injured, 100 are civilians and the rest are members of the security forces, Mr Ortega says.

The minister says of those detained, 80 are due to face prosecutors and another 24 have been jailed pending trial.