In Venezuela, the drop in oil prices has led to joblessness, inflation, and shortages of just about everything. And there doesn’t seem to be an end to it.
Now, as the crisis drags on, Venezuelans are venting their frustrations. About 400 people attacked and looted businesses in the town of Cumana. Security forces had to step in and as reported on Facebook that 20 shops were damaged. But legislator Milagros Paz said that there was one fatality and 27 injured in the disturbance, and more than 100 shops bore the brunt of the anger.
“It was all very confusing,” Paz said. “There were simultaneous lootings in different parts of Cumana” reuters.com.
Last week, at least 10 similar incidents occurred across the country, including in Caracas, where demonstrators blocked a major highway. They chanted, “We want food, not mangoes.” Flour, milk, and other foodstuffs have been in such short supply that Venezuelans have resorted to eating mangoes off the trees.
The government blames the shortages on the U.S. But many Venezuelans like Osio think President Maduro’s handling of the crisis is highly political. The ruling socialist party has been given the job of distributing food, making many fear that if they don’t support the party, they won’t be fed. That’s only fueling the skyrocketing discontent with Maduro’s government.
So things in Venezuela may very well get worse before they get better.