Today, I went to the OAS building in Caracas. For a week now, about 50 students are making a hunger strike. Their demand is quite clear: the Inter American court of Human Rights must send a commission to Venezuela to make an independent research on the situation of the political prisoners in Venezuela. Apparently, a secretary of the court is going to speak with a student representative group on the phone during this afternoon. We’ll see what happens.
The student’ hunger strike has spread to other parts of the country like Valencia, Maracay and Puerto La Cruz.
Yesterday, the protesters reached their first achievement: Julio Rivas, a student who was detained and imprisoned under charges like “instigation to commit a crime” and “fatherland betrayal” was released – conditionally. Protesters say that this, although it is good news, it’s far from being enough because many political prisoners are still behind bars and Rivas still has to present to the courts facing criminal charges just for attending to a protest against the government.
While I was walking throughout the Orinoco avenue, meeting some acquaintances and looking at the students whom haven’t eat for days and are just laying down in their beds waiting; I thought that things are going just worse in Venezuela, much more worse than when this blog started.
Protests used to consists on demonstrations and other activities alike, and even considering the violent clashes and the repression, I think that it is hard to find a more extreme way of protesting than a hunger strike. And I have seen two major hunger strikes this year already. This means that unless we stop eating for days with all the risks that this carries for our health, no one is going to hear us. This also means that demands are now so extreme and desperate that they require desperate ways of protesting against it.
We are no longer protesting because the government closed a TV Channel, we are protesting because many people just like us are now facing trials, are forbidden to leave the country and in worse cases, are imprisoned and sharing cells with common delinquency.
One thing is for certain: situations like this one will not be featured on the next Stone’ movie.