AP NEWS

Venezuela frees 43 prisoners in ‘national dialogue’

June 13, 2018

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan officials say they’re setting free 43 prisoners in an ongoing campaign to ease tensions in the politically divided country.

It’s the third round of prisoner releases in recent weeks.

President Nicolas Maduro announced a national dialogue, including prisoner releases, upon being re-elected May 20 to a second term in office. The election was challenged by his leading rival and was met with broad international rejection.

Maduro loyalist and National Constituent Assembly president Delcy Rodriguez said Wednesday’s releases were part of the dialogue toward achieving peace.

Among those walking free are dozens of prisoners who opposition groups consider illegally arrested political activists.

Prisoner rights groups are critical of the conditional releases which forbid the person from talking to the media or leaving the country.

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