Crisis-hit Venezuela launches war games


CARACAS: Venezuela was to launch two days of war games on Friday, flexing its military muscle as President Nicolas Maduro battles an opposition push to have him voted out and instability from an imploding economy. Half a million soldiers and militia members were taking part in the exercise meant to show the armed forces are prepared to put down any internal strife or foreign aggression. Maduro, who accuses the US of conspiring against him, this week imposed a state of emergency giving soldiers and police broader powers to keep public order and distribute scarce food. He has warned he could ratchet up the extraordinary measures if violence challenges his authority.


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