Key things to know — Venezuela's military

Key things to know — Venezuela's military

Key things to know — Venezuela's military

Venezuela: New beginnings or more of the same?

The spiritual home of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics also urged Venezuela's security forces to avoid "excessive and disproportionate use of force".

She alleged that authorities were desperate to get their hands on dossiers containing information on dirty dealings by high-level officials, including sensitive details about millions of dollars in bribes paid by Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht.

"Let there be no provocations, nor should people fall into provocations", Maduro said late Thursday as he assured all was ready for the Constituent Assembly.

Street protests since April in the South American nation have left more than 120 people dead as rock-throwing protesters have been met by rubber bullets, water cannon and tear gas.

The opposition has called a mass march in the capital, raising fears of violence that could add to a death toll of more than 125 over the past four months.

Citing Control Ciudadano, our correspondent said: "What's unusual about this man who speaks in the video, who says he's a captain in the army, is that he was wanted by the government in 2014, also for trying to organise some sort of insurrection".

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A video posted on social media several days ago purported to show Ledezma under arrest and being dragged out of his home by police in uniforms emblazoned with the word Sebin, Venezuela's intelligence agency. "The only thing it's doing is destroying itself and committing suicide".

Another sign of this tension: gathered Saturday in Sao Paulo, the ministers of foreign Affairs of Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay made a decision to suspend Venezuela's Mercosur, the south american common market, "rupture of the democratic order". "This is a civic and military action to re-establish constitutional order".

"Venezuela is a divided country, it is a polarized country, and it will require a lot of vision and a lot of worldwide support to sit down and have a dialogue that can find a solution", said Socorro.

The military's capabilities - and its loyalty under duress - are core concerns at a time when its leaders have claimed that a "paramilitary" force led by a deserter and backed by "foreign governments" has attacked a military base in what might be seen as an incipient coup attempt.

The opposition boycotted Sunday's election of the Constituent Assembly, arguing that the rules were rigged to benefit the government, and almost all the candidates were supporters of Maduro's administration.

The inaugural session of its 500-plus members - who include Maduro's wife and son - will take place under high tension.

Venezuelans view the armed forces as the key power broker in their country, and opposition leaders have repeatedly exhorted the military to break with Maduro over what they call his erosion of democracy and brutality toward demonstrators.

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