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Venezuelans Battle With Shields, Gas Masks, Fecal Bombs in Latest Protests

Flames engulf a city bus that caught fire when the bus driver tried to start it near a protest against President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas on Saturday. Fernando Llano / AP

Riot police with helmets and shields used pepper gas several times to control the crowd as hundreds of pensioners jostled against security lines to attempt a march from a Caracas square.

Since launching protests against Maduro in early April, Venezuela’s opposition has sought to vary tactics by staging silent and candle-lit marches, for instance, and rallies for women, musicians and medics.

The protests come as the nephew of fashion designer Carolina Herrera

was taken hostage and killed along with his business partner on Thursday night.

During the past year, murders in Venezuela reached a rate of 70.1 per 100,000 inhabitants, up sharply from 58 per 100,000 in 2015, according to data from the country’s Public Ministry.

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