Venezuelan opposition politician shot dead

Luis Diaz assassinated during a public speech days before legislative elections.

    Venezuelan opposition politician shot dead
    Diaz was standing next to the wife of the jailed opposition leader when he was gunned down [Reuters]

    A Venezuelan opposition politician was shot dead during a public meeting days before a legislative election that has raised tensions around the politically polarised nation.

    Gunmen in a vehicle shot Luis Diaz, head of the Democratic Action party in the town of Altagracia de Orituco in central Venezuela, while he was meeting with locals on Wednesday, the national opposition leader said.

    "He's just been assassinated by gunshot," Henry Ramos said in a tweet, adding Diaz was sharing the stage at the time with Lilian Tintori, wife of Venezuela's best-known jailed opposition leader, Leopoldo Lopez.

    Democratic Action is part of the opposition Democratic Unity coalition about to contest a December 6 election for a new National Assembly in Venezuela.

    Polls show the coalition has a good chance of wresting the legislature from the ruling socialists for the first time in 16 years.

    No immediate confirmation of the incident came from Venezuelan authorities.

    Tintori, who is on a nationwide tour of Venezuela denouncing rights abuses and publicising her husband's case, said she would give more details on Thursday of the "terror, harassment, and violence that we suffered from the regime".

    "Today I suffered two attacks," she said on Twitter. "Our condolences to the Diaz family... Guarico, today my heart weeps for you." 

    SOURCE: Agencies


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