On July 5th, approximately a hundred Chavista activists rushed into the building of the National Assembly carrying sticks and pipes, and besieged for several hours a group of about 350 people that included national representatives, journalists, visitors and students. Five members of the assembly –the national legislative body, currently controlled by a majority of representatives of opposition parties- ended with multiple injuries.
Previous to the attack, a crowd had been gathering around the building for several hours, during which the legislative body held a session in commemoration of Venezuela’s national independence day. An unexpected appearance of several members of the Executive –including the head of the armed forces, Vladimir Padrino Lopez and some ministers- interrupted the session, allowing Vice President Tareck El Aissami to give a speech urging sympathizers of the government to demonstrate in support of the President. The military police guarding the legislature acquiesced to the break-in by stepping aside while the intruders accessed the building. President Maduro denied any involvement in the episode and expressed commitment to opening an investigation.