Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro has extended a state of emergency and a state of economic emergency for a further two months, local media reported Thursday.
It’s the fourth time he has made the decree, which clamps down on the rights of the political opposition and gives military and citizen security groups special powers to ensure food delivery across the country.
Venezuela has been plagued by long lines at supermarkets for months, with medications, sanitary products and bread in short supply.
Maduro’s government is currently at loggerheads with food producers, saying that they are leading an “economic war” against the government and deliberately slowing production.
Venezuela has one of the world’s highest inflation rates, with the World Bank placing it at 121.7 per cent in 2015.
The opposition, a coalition of several parties from different sides of politics, is aiming for a referendum to vote out Maduro this year.
An international summit of leaders at Venezuela’s Margarita Island is due to take place this weekend, but few heads of state are expected to attend. (dpa/NAN)