Noodle Western: A new sheriff
Venezuela was recently visited by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who arrived with a very tight agenda for the —now traditional— bestowing of the faux(?) Presidential sash ceremony in his honor, and to sign a few more cooperation agreements. (Here’s Anabella’s break down on the China/Venezuela relationship in Spanish). We are digging into these agreements, and promise to have something soon, but for now we know that Central Government owes your ass to China.
Although some authorities insist this is unrelated news (to the Chinese deals thingy), on Tuesday rumors of previous days materialized when alternate janitorial minister for Caracas, Ernesto Villegas, approached “residents” of the infamous Tower of David to inform them they were to be moved to a new luxury development in Valles del Tuy.
Of course, by luxury development we refer to a brand new Mision Vivienda complex that was already promised to other people. While the evacuation of the Tower of David was underway, Villegas announced that Sambil Candelaria —the other massive commercial structure that was “occupied” by homeless families— would be evacuated as well. The developers of Sambil are ready to take over and recoup the premises since the expropriation process never went through and they still hold title to the real estate. We’ll see…
And justice for all…
On Wednesday, 18 year old Marco Coello, one of the students imprisoned since February in connection to the student protests was liberated. Scratch that, was released under parole. The other students, including cell mate Christian Holdack, were left in prison to be tried in confinement. Leopoldo Lopez’s trial is, of course, in a slow track and will continue in August.
No fly zone
While planes have been dropping all over the world, Conviasa’s just don’t take off. Since Monday a group of two hundred something Venezuelans (and counting) have been left stranded in Spain by the crappy Venezuelan airline. Apparently, the Italian company that was leasing the aircraft to Conviasa decided to terminate the contract. Daniel Fermin who was to return to Venezuela on Monday’s flight has been chronicling the mishap on real time at Prodavinci. It’s like the sequel to that shitty Tom Hanks movie but with a whole town. What the hell? Lets invade Barajas airport!
Diosdado Cabello recently traveled to Bolivar and pissed off Sidor’s unions by calling them mafias. The unions have called an anti-Diosdado protest for Monday. All in good fun. Mafia Wars, anyone?
Deeper into the Rabbit Hole: Fried chicken!
Hugo Carvajal, a man who was fingered (hehe) as Chavez’s own Vladimiro Montesinos because of his (bridge-like) relationship between Central Government and drug cartels, was apprehended by the Aruban police. They hold an order for Carvajal’s extradition to the US. The man was appointed by the Venezuelan government to head the consulate in the island and had just arrived to take over. His official appointment was pending approval from the Dutch government. This of course is developing news and a wide array of theories are sprouting all over. Whether the man turned himself in or he was just caught wand in his hand, we are sure he will be safer in the US than, uh, elsewhere.
Funny thing is that the government keeps on digging. President Maduro said he was “resteado” (all in) with Carvajal (yep, the alleged narco); Diosdado Cabello sort of gave an ultimatum to liberate the guy and; the Supreme Court… Damn, the Supreme Court granted an injunction (or whatever) to (have the Venezuelan government make the best efforts to) protect Carvajal in Aruba.
In related news, a Venezuelan ex-judge who was traveling to Disney World with his family was aprehended in the US… Something to do with the Aruba drug bust.
(Hat Tip to @LuisCarlos and @Naky for this pearl: El Universal’s first act of censorship was on an article about drug cartels and the military. This same week.)
In what seems like retaliation against the almighty empire (the American one in case you were wondering), deposed mayor Enzo Scarano, was beaten up by counter intelligence officers in the Ramo Verde prison on Friday. Also, Voluntad Popular’s Freddy Guevara claimed Daniel Ceballos and Leopoldo Lopez were assaulted as well (not as harsh as Scarano who was allegedly cuffed and beaten the crap off). Earlier this week there was an online cat fight between the Attorney General (Ortega Diaz) and Lopez’s wife, where the latter claimed that her husband had been subject to mistreatment and unjustified solitary confinement. To prove her wrong, they released a picture of the prisoners singing merrily in the prison yard, and shortly thereafter the DIM goons were sent to beat the living daylights out of them. See? She got her timing wrong.
No show Roadshow
Minister Rafael Ramirez’s agenda was full and he could not attend the meeting the government had called in NY for a very much needed round of international investment in Venezuela. The roadshow was cancelled, but not before several investors from the US and (yeah) all over the world flew into NY for the meeting. The reason is not clear, not even for conspiracy theorists. It seems like the Carvajal scandal is not a reason enough for this mayor flop, particularly with rumors on a possible sale of CITGO circling the shit pile. Or is it?
The Venezuelan government —that drunken uncle who’s always touching you inappropriately— suspended flights to Aruba and the Dutch Antilles, for about 15 minutes. Then, they realized whisky was running out.
It feels like a year since PSUV’s internal vote flop. Eh?
Even when Venezuela does fall into the bucket of forgotten causes for the international community, it never fails to deliver.
Una cuñita pa lo panas: