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26 April, 2017

Chavista trade unionist kidnapped and murdered in Venezuela

Ramirez, from President Nicolas Maduro's PSUV party, died this weekend as the country continues to suffer a string of violent right-wing attacks.

Venezuela trade union leader, Esmin Ramirez, was killed Sunday in the state of Bolivar after being kidnapped in an act that people close to him claim was driven by political motives.

Ramirez, who was a member of the Movement 21 labor syndicate in the state-run iron ore producer Ferrominera and part of the PSUV political party in Cachamay, was killed in El Rinconcito sector in Guayana City, a city along the bank of the Orinoco River in Bolivar state.

The leader was killed by several gunshots in the head. He had been previously kidnapped on Saturday night in San Felix. His body was retrieved by officials Sunday.

Ferrominera expressed condolences through a statement on social media, saying the company hoped that authorities would investigate and clarify the details surrounding the Ramirez' death.

Ramirez had denounced previous attacks against other members of his organization in the past and was an active participant in marches to show support for President Nicolas Maduro, as well as on social media.

The union leader was preparing for a massive march for International Worker's Day on May 1.

Meanwhile, another community, Jackeline Ortega, was murdered in the greater Caracas area in Santa Lucia del Tuy. Ortega was also a member of the PSUV as well as a leader in the Local Committee on Supply and Production, known as CLAP, a government-created alternative food distribution program.

Ortega was reportedly shot dead by four masked assailants.

Venezuela faces a violent wave of protests called by the right-wing opposition that has left injured and at least 22 people dead, including a woman who was walking past a pro-government march and a member of the police.

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