CARACAS, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- The violent groups that have marred recent political protests in Venezuela are "increasingly more isolated," Foreign Minister Elias Jaua said Tuesday.
"Why aren't there violent gangs in the (working class) neighborhoods? Because they know this is not their fight," Jaua said at an official event in Acevedo, Miranda State.
The often violent anti-government protests against the government of President Nicolas Maduro have left 13 people dead and 149 people injured since they broke out on Feb. 12 in the capital Caracas and several other cities.
Jaua said the protests are not a sign of widespread discontent with the government, noting "it is not the oligarchs that lead popular rebellion."
On Monday, Maduro met with opposition party mayors and governors, with the notable exclusion of main opposition leader and former presidential candidate and Miranda Governor Henrique Capriles.
Some 83 percent of Venezuelans condemn the violence-marred protests that have rocked the country in the past two weeks, according to a poll released Tuesday.
Oscar Schemel, president of polling firm Hinterlaces, added those people "demand the government sanction those responsible for the violence."
Meanwhile, he acknowledged that economic problems, such as scarcity and inflation, have generated a climate of uncertainty, dissatisfaction and unrest in Venezuela.
"Seven out of 10 Venezuelans think the country is headed down the wrong path" economically and financially, he said. At the same time, some 71 percent believe political decisions should be decided with the respect for the will of the majority.
Venezuelan president calls for peace amid possible coup
CARACAS, Feb. 23 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro Sunday evening called for peace and coexistence in his country amid a possible coup conducted by the opposition.
Maduro said in a television interview that the hardline opposition in Venezuela, supported by the United States, tried to take his country to the path of a civil war. Full story