Venezuelan president speech cut short in 'drone attack'

Security members protect Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro after his speech was interrupted in Caracas, Venezuela, on August 4, 2018.

Moments before the transmission was abruptly cut off, soldiers were seen running.

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro watches a military parade in May.

Explosions from drones in Venezuela during Nicolas Maduro's speech were an attempted attack on the president, the country's government said. "The investigation clearly reveals they came from drone-like devices that carried explosives".

A video shows Ms Flores wince, and both she and Mr Maduro look up after an unidentified sound.

Earlier, various reports by global media outlets had indicated that this was an assassination attempt on Maduro.

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The audio suddenly drops, and Maduro, his wife Cilia Flores, and other officials on the podium peer up at the sky.

He said Maduro is safe and unharmed but that seven people were injured.

The explosions forced the president to cut a speech short as hundreds of soldiers broke rank in fear.

The country's economic turmoil compares to Germany's after World War I and Zimbabwe's at the beginning of the last decade, International Monetary Fund officials said, adding that Venezuela's economic contraction ranks among the world's deepest in six decades.

Venezuela, a once-wealthy oil nation, is in the grips of a five-year crisis under President Maduro's socialist government.

Firefighters at the scene were disputing the government's account, AP said.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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