CARACAS – Thursday brought additional protests in Caracas and other Venezuelan cities over shortages of cooking gas and other consumer goods.
“We are protesting here about everything, about health, about food. We are protesting because there is no transportation, we are protesting because there is no social security. We are protesting for everything that the human being, the person, needs to live in a normal country,” 34-year-old Marbelys Arias told EFE at a demonstration in west Caracas.
She was among dozens of people who gathered to block roads in the neighborhood following a night of disturbances and looting amid the government’s failure to provide the traditional low-price Christmas ham.
Members of pro-government groups known as “collectives” came to the demonstration in west Caracas with hopes of persuading the protesters to relent.
“Children are fainting,” Arias said. “They are missing hours, days, months of class because they don’t have good nutrition. They don’t have protein because (the price of) chicken is sky-high, beef is sky-high, flour is sky-high.”
Millions of Venezuelan families depend on subsidized food as the oil-rich Andean nation contends with hyperinflation.