Coup rumors seek to create image of instability
Posted: Saturday, June 8, 2002
A small sector of the opposition is floating rumors of another coup to create a climate of instability, Venezuela's foreign minister Roy Chaderton charged.
"They want to create an impression of instability and of the imminent downfall of the legitimate government of Venezuela," Chaderton said.
President Hugo Chavez was deposed and returned to power in a failed two-day coup in April.
The Caracas daily El Universal published portions of what it said were communiques in which military officers declare themselves insubordinate to Chavez and call for a "constitutional rebellion."
On June 4, opposition journalist Patricia Poleo, editor of the daily Nuevo Pais, divulged the contents of a videotape whose authenticity was not confirmed of hooded officers declaring that they would "do whatever is necessary" to defend Venezuela's institutions and denouncing Chavez as a "leftist."
A week ago, a hooded man claiming to be an officer of the National Guard made public statements against Chavez.
Rumors circulating by word of mouth are reinforced by news reports and handbills calling for an overthrow of the government.
Chaderton said well-financed groups were using the Internet to foment subversion.